Jewel was 15-years old and from a nice family, and like many 15-year-olds, enjoyed going to the shopping mall with friends. But when a guy at the mall started flirting with her and then asked her on a date, she believed he really liked her and said yes. That was the last anyone saw of her.
Her parents were frantic and called the local police department immediately. Law enforcement classified her as a “runaway” and her case was placed in a file folder with 28 similar cases. Weeks passed and the police had no results. The parents reached out to Special Operations.
We immediately dispatched our team of private investigators who interviewed her family and friends and searched phone records. We also combed through social media sites and eventually found out she was being sold for sex for $240/hour in nice hotels near Napa. When we finally found the perpetrators, we discovered that Jewel was in the back of their car. Our investigators immediately brought their findings to local law enforcement, who, because of the work we did, began searching for her. Because our investigator was able to show this was a crime — sex trafficking of a minor — and not a “runaway,” Jewel was saved.