Late one afternoon, Detective Scates received a call from Community Court coordinator Chris Pleasanton, who said the girl named Gwen attending the counseling class was in hysterics, afraid for her life, convinced that someone was coming after her. “She was telling me how she had been shot with heroin and raped, how men would come in and have sex with her.And I thought, Yeah, sure—I thought she was trying to talk her way out of the program.Having gained access to victims, law-enforcement officials, and a convicted trafficker, Collins follows a major case that put to the test the federal government’s Trafficking Victims Protection Act.“He called me a stupid bitch … I had to tell people I fell off stage because I had so many bruises on my ribs face and legs.…
Then she mentioned the name ‘Rahmyti’—a name I’d known since my first day on the force—and her story started making sense. So I started looking into the allegations”—a thorny undertaking that would consume her attention for nearly four years, and, Scates says, “change my life, and how I am a police officer.”Officer Deborah Scates of the Hartford Police Mounted Unit, who cracked the breakthrough domestic trafficking case involving two New England blondes, in full-dress uniform on Zeus, in South Windsor, Connecticut.
Brian Forbes‘Rahmyti” was the self-aggrandizing alias of Dennis Paris, a short, 300-pound, 32-year-old smooth talker who inhabited the dimmer fringes of the local club scene, and who had aspirations to become a rapper, like the musicians he claimed to represent. Attorney’s Office, she had been sold to him, for $1,200, in a package deal with her best friend, Alicia.
In the Sex Crimes Bureau of the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, in the pediatric division of Fort Bragg’s Womack Army Medical Center, in the back alleys of Waterbury, Connecticut, and in the hallways of Hartford’s Community Court, Assistant D. There are more young American girls entering the commercial sex industry—an estimated 300,000 at this moment—and their ages have been dropping drastically.
“The average starting age for prostitution is now 13,” says Rachel Lloyd, executive director of Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (gems), a Harlem-based organization that rescues young women from “the life.” Says Judge Cofield, who formerly presided over Hartford’s Prostitution Protocol, a court-ordered rehabilitation program, “I call them the Little Barbies.”The explanations offered for these downwardly expanding demographics are various, and not at all mutually exclusive. Sharon Cooper believes that the anti-intellectual, consumerist, hyper-violent, and super-eroticized content of movies (), gangsta rap (Nelly’s “Tip Drill”), and cyber sites (Second Life: Jail Bait) has normalized sexual harm.
A pound of heroin or an AK-47 can be retailed once, but a young girl can be sold 10 to 15 times a day—and a “righteous” pimp confiscates 100 percent of her earnings.“There are basically two business models: manipulating girls through violence—that’s called ‘gorilla’ pimping—and controlling them with drugs,” says Patel, who prosecuted the case of New York–based trafficker Corey Davis, a.k.a.
“Magnificent.” A high-living, highly educated pimp who kept the slave master’s manifesto in his Mercedes, Davis, Patel says, made sex slaves out of, among others, a 12-year-old runaway and a university coed on a track scholarship.
“He said he knew how much I was worth, and offered me .” Once Scates, who also modeled in her youth, informed the john that she was a cop, he tried to bribe her with tickets to a University of Connecticut basketball game and team paraphernalia stashed in the back of his four-by-four.
The man in search of fellatio, it turned out, was UConn’s assistant basketball coach, Clyde Vaughan, who, it emerged, had a history of similar arrests out of state.
Several years ago she sustained injuries in a head-on crash during a narcotics-related car chase. One of her career coups was the bringing down of the Alpha Club, a brothel that had operated undisturbed in Hartford for 25 years. ’ And I answered, ‘For one thing it’s against the law.’ ” The case was successfully prosecuted in March 2004, and a framed check for 6,104, the amount Scates secured for her department in the asset forfeiture, was hung in Hartford’s police headquarters.
During a routine reverse sting in Hartford on August 18, 2004, a man approached Scates (who was acting as a decoy), asking for a blow job.
and the Senate introduces a new bipartisan bill for victim support, the problem proliferates across continents, in casinos, on streets, and directly into your mobile device.