Police in Marietta, located in central Cobb County, Georgia, United States, have busted a human sex trafficking operation at a Northwest Parkway hotel.
Police say they rescued a young girl in the process.
The investigation was prompted by a call to 911 on Monday, August 20. Police warrants say the 15-year-old girl caller was a runaway.
Officer Chuck McPhilamy from the Marietta Police Department said the girl told 911 dispatchers: “She had just gotten out of a hotel room where she was being forced to have sex with older men, and that she was told if she left that she would be killed.”
According to the Police warrants, in her interview, the 15-year-old girl said she was at the Northwest Parkway hotel between August 17 and August 20, where three men came to have sex with her.
She says she was paid $80 to have intercourse with the men.
“They had lured this 15-year-old to this hotel room and set up an advertisement to offer up her to have sex with men for a price,” says Officer Chuck McPhilamy.
Based on the teenager’s statements, Marietta police secured a search warrant for two days In the guest rooms at Northwest Parkway hotel
Marietta police Detective Mark Erion’s warrants state that
White and Thomas are said to have both handled the money.
Four suspects were arrested and booked into Cobb Adult Detention Center that evening and are currently facing the following state charges:
1) Twenty-two-year-old Kamari Bolden of Atlanta was charged with Trafficking of Persons for Labor or Sexual Servitude (F).
2) Seventeen-year-old Laura Waugh of Marietta was charged with Giving False Name and Date of Birth (M) and Trafficking of Persons for Labor or Sexual Servitude (F).
3) Twenty-two-year-old Kenneth Thomas of Fairburn was charged with Keeping a Place of Prostitution (M), Pimping (F) and Trafficking of Persons for Labor or Sexual Servitude (F).
4) Twenty-six-year-old Douglas White of Dallas was charged with Pimping (F) and Trafficking of Persons for Labor or Sexual Servitude (F).
Erion also detailed that a 22-year-old woman identified as Kamari Bolden did the child’s makeup, took photos of her, posted online escort ads, and set up “dates” for the girl to have sex for money. A 17-year-old named Laura Waugh allegedly posed for pictures with the younger teen, offering a “two-girl special.”
Officer Chuck McPhilamy says the Marietta police chief and the department commend the younger teen, whose life was threatened by the men running the sex ring, for having the “tremendous courage” to call 911.
It is unclear how the teen managed to get out of the room, or whose phone she used to call 911.
“If it weren’t for the courage of this young woman reaching out to 911, as well as the community’s ability to trust us as a local police department and cooperate with us and share information, crimes like this might go unsolved,” McPhilamy says. “We have huge admiration for this young woman, and hope and pray for a speedy recovery for her.”
Witnesses told Channel 2 Action News that dozens of officers swarmed the motel to make the bust.
“They started moving in while we were working, and the next thing you knew, there was a big van and a SWAT tank,” said witness Cody Matrone.
The investigation is still active, and anyone with additional information related to this is urged to contact Det. Mark Erion at (770) 794-5363.
Image credit: WSBTV.com
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