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TCDA involved in six sex trafficking cases in 2016

The Tulare County District Attorney’s Office has been actively investigating and prosecuting cases of human trafficking.

At the Tulare County Human Trafficking Taskforce meeting on June 22, the District Attorneys office shared that they have filed five cases against seven defendants in 2016. Additionally, one case filed in 2015 is in sentencing. The Tulare County District Attorney’s Office is also currently investigating two other sex trafficking cases involving minors.

On June 3, a Tulare man plead guilty to charges involving child sex trafficking. The TCDA’s Office sent out this release:

Today in Department 4 of the Tulare County Superior Court, Visalia Division, Judge Brett Aldredge presiding, Anthony Lott, age 24, of Tulare, pleaded guilty to two felony counts of human trafficking of minors for a sex act, two felony counts of pandering by procuring a minor over the age of 16, one felony count of pimping, one felony count of having a concealed firearm in a vehicle, and a misdemeanor count of carrying a loaded firearm in a vehicle in a city limit.

On October 6, 2015 the Tulare Police Department was conducting a human trafficking operation at a local hotel. Officers observed a vehicle enter the parking lot of the hotel and saw a female exit the car while the male driver, Lott, remained in the car. The female offered an undercover officer sex in exchange for money. While Lott remained in the car, he was contacted by law enforcement and was found to be in possession of a loaded firearm.

Lott was arrested for pimping and having possession of a loaded firearm. After further investigation which was conducted by the District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigations, Investigator Martha Rodriguez was able to make connections that Lott had trafficked two minors from the Tulare area between the dates of November 1, 2013 and November 1, 2014. With additional investigation by the Office of the District Attorney, on February 22, 2016, Lott was charged with two counts of human trafficking of a minor for a sex act and two counts of pandering by procuring a minor over the age of 16.

On June 29, 2016, Lott will be sentenced to 7 years 4 months state prison and will be ordered to register for life as a sex offender.

“I commend law enforcement for being diligent in this case and bringing justice to the victims,” said District Attorney Tim Ward. “Human trafficking is real, and it can happen in any community. If you suspect a person is being exploited for sex or labor, contact law enforcement immediately.”

The case was prosecuted by Supervising Deputy District Attorney Cindy Underwood of the Special Crimes Division. It was investigated by Officer Rosemarie Pacheco and Detective Vince Medina of the Tulare Police Department, as well as Investigator Martha Rodriguez of the Office of the District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigations.

 

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“Chosen” Sex Trafficking Prevention Screening Tuesday

chosen screening

Chosen will be shown at COS Theater on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 6:30-8:00p.m., followed by a panel discussion by local experts in child sex trafficking. It is primarily geared to youth and young adults, as well as parents and youth workers.

We have been promoting the sex trafficking prevention video Chosen, because it is an excellent resource to educate and equip teens to understand and respond to sex trafficking attempts. At the Tulare County Human Trafficking Taskforce meeting, the DAs office recognized it as an excellent film. The short video tells the story of two girls in separate sex trafficking efforts. The video includes signs that someone may be a potential trafficker. It also gives signs to youth that their peers might be involved in sex trafficking, and gives them guidance on what to do.

Please invite people to come. Share this flyer and blog post, as well as the Facebook event invite here.

Boys and men in human trafficking

Sex trafficking awareness sometimes gives the idea that it is only females victimized. However, boys and men are victims of sex trafficking. Males also account for a percentage labor trafficking victims.

Here are articles and videos that sheds light on this underrepresented group:

Call Me Collin: The diary of a sex trafficked boy

What About Male victims of human trafficking? YouTube video

Working with make victims of human trafficking YouTube video

Follow pending CA legislation concerning human trafficking

There are numerous bills pertaining to or involving human trafficking in the California State legislation. Among these is a bill to allow schools to teach sex trafficking and sexual abuse prevention curriculum.

See more details and stay updated through Polaris Project’s website here.

Prevention Videos Help To Educate Youth

Chosen-Plus-Packages The Tulare Couny Child Abuse Prevention Council has a new resource in its library available for lending to those seeking to bring prevention awareness to youth. Shared Hope International, a organization that has been addressing human trafficking for over a decade, has developed DVD based prevention curriculum to educate and equip youth to respond to sex trafficking. Chosen Prevention Curriculum  is video resource reveals the warning signs and sometimes fatal consequences of sex trafficking to equip teens to protect themselves and others from being trapped in the horrific and violent sex industry.  The video gives guidance to youth who may suspect that their peer is a victim of trafficking as well as general ways to help prevent trafficking, among other information.

The DVD sets come with conversation guides and other helps on a second disc that can be downloaded and printed out. Shared Hope also has more recently released a gang version that includes a second video with information and a survivor story pertinent to  sex trafficking within gangs. The DVD curriculum set is available in Spanish and English. To borrow a copy from CAPC, email brandi@tularecountyhtresources.com.

Welcome!

The Central Valley Abolitionist Calendar is currently in the process of development. We hope that this site will be a useful resource for those in the Central Valley who desire to address human trafficking.

If you have resources, events, or other information that may be useful, please contact us at cvabolitionist@gmail.com. Also feel free to contact us regarding inquiries pertaining to human trafficking.