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Q: Prostitution law in Washington State ( Answered 2 out of 5 stars,   3 Comments )
Subject: Prostitution law in Washington State
Category: Reference, Education and News > General Reference
Asked by: afreepixie-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 18 Oct 2004 11:54 PDT
Expires: 17 Nov 2004 10:54 PST
Question ID: 416553
Is there a mandatory sentencing law in the state of Washington for
prostitution?  If so, what are the terms?
Subject: Re: Prostitution law in Washington State
Answered By: tar_heel_v-ga on 18 Oct 2004 13:41 PDT
Rated:2 out of 5 stars

In the state of Washington, there are several statutes covering
prostitution and they can be found at
 Since you didn't specify which definition of prostitution you are
looking for, it is difficult to provide you with sentence requirements
as certain prostitution crimes are misdemeanors and others are
felonies.  As with most states, there are sentence guidlines, however,
extenuating circumstances such as weapons, locations, drug
involvement, past criminal history, and juvenille status , can have an
effect on the sentence.

Juvenille sentence standards can be found at

For misdemeanors, the State of Washington defines the punishement as
"Misdemeanors and Gross Misdemeanors. (a) Any crime punishable by a
fine of not more than one thousand dollars, or by imprisonment in a
county jail for not more than ninety days, or by both such fine and
imprisonment is a misdemeanor. Whenever the performance of any act is
prohibited by any statute, and no penalty for the violation of such
statute is imposed, the committing of such act shall be a
misdemeanor."  Based on this information, for misdemeanor prostitution
charges, the sentence cannot be more than 90 days and fines can be no
greater than $1,000.

A worksheet has been developed that determines felony sentencing.  The
range of the sentence for promoting prostitution Class B felony can be
from 21 to 120 months, depending on offender history.   The range of
the sentence for promoting prostitution Class C felony ranges from 1
to 60 months.  These guidlines can be found on pages 158 and 159 of
the Washington Adult Sentencing Manual which can be found in PDF and
Word format at
 NOTE:  These documents are over 250 pages long and may take awhile to

Thanks for your question. If you need any additional clarification,
please let me know.



Search Strategy:
washington state prostitution mandatory sentencing

Revised Code of Washington

Request for Answer Clarification by afreepixie-ga on 18 Oct 2004 17:06 PDT
I'm talking about a misdemeanor-- sexual contact for money between
adults.  Is there any mandatory sentencing for that in Washington

Clarification of Answer by tar_heel_v-ga on 18 Oct 2004 20:04 PDT
For misdemeanor charges, there are no sentencing guidelines outside of
the fact that it cannot be for more than 90 days and up to $1,000 for
misdemeanors and up to one year in jail and $5,000 for gross
misdemeanors.  There are no minimum sentencing guidelines for
misdemeanors.  Now, the question comes down to city ordinances.  I
would recommend consulting with an attorney
afreepixie-ga rated this answer:2 out of 5 stars
this rating will go way up if I get answer to my qualification.

Subject: Re: Prostitution law in Washington State
From: steph53-ga on 18 Oct 2004 18:14 PDT

Its too late to change your rating. Once a question is rated, thats
it. When you post a should normally wait until
the researcher has time to get back to you. FYI.

Subject: Re: Prostitution law in Washington State
From: afreepixie-ga on 18 Oct 2004 18:50 PDT
I guess you're not exactly making this easy for me.  I'm not clear on
the distinction between prostitution as a misdemeanor and prostitution
as a felony.  Perhaps you could tell me the answer instead of
requiring me to thumb through hundreds of pages of legal text.  Here
in CA, prostitution is always a misdemeanor, and yes, there is
mandatory sentencing.  The term depends on the number of offenses. 
Anyway, I'd like to know if there is mandatory sentencing for this
criminal offense in Washngton State, and if so, what the terms are.
Subject: Re: Prostitution law in Washington State
From: afreepixie-ga on 18 Oct 2004 20:49 PDT
When I posted my first comment, as far as I could tell the system
would not accept my response until I posted a rating.

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