The success of the TFZ program led elected leaders in Alabama to enact public policies during the recently concluded state legislative session that will positively impact the lives of survivors of sex trafficking, crackdown on sex buyers and better identify victims of trafficking.
In February 2020, Vestavia Hills police were able to rescue four children from trafficking and arrest the man suspected of trafficking them.
Capt. Johnny Evans with the Vestavia Hills Police Department said without the training they received as part of being named a “Human TraffickingFree Zone” in November 2019, they might not have been able to spot what was happening.
As the city continues to train its employees on how to spot and prevent human trafficking, the Police Department is seeing success in cracking down on these cases.
“Our officers now, when they’re dealing with people, know to look for certain things,” Evans said. “We’ve really been able to notice more of the signs.”
Becoming a “Human TraffickingFree Zone” is part of the Child Trafficking Solutions Project, formed in response to the passage of the state’s Safe Harbor Act, created by former state Rep. Jack Williams from Vestavia Hills.
Two Prattville women were charged with human trafficking after they were allegedly caught encouraging other women to engage in sexual activity for money.
According to court records, a 21-year-old woman was arrested Saturday about 9:30 p.m. at a downtown Montgomery hotel after she enticed another woman to assist her in performing a sexual massage. The woman, unbeknownst to her, had coordinated a meeting with an undercover law enforcement officer by answering a message on a website, according to her arrest affidavit.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – An arrested has been made for 25-year-old Isaiah Rashaud Williams and 26-year-old Demetrius Lamonallen Wright after finding several female victims of human trafficking.
MOUNTAIN BROOK, AL., June 16, 2020 — The City Council of Mountain Brook, Alabama, recently voted to designate the city a TraffickingFree Zone, a program created by …
Auburn, Alabama– Multiple agencies in Lee County have gotten together this year to discuss the growing problem of sex and human trafficking. “[There are] kids [who] don’t really have a way to make money, a lot of times they have to do things that they don’t like to do in order to get food, to get shelter,” Teresa Collier, an intelligence analyst, said. “So a lot of times what we see are those runaway kids, they’re engaging in survival sex.”
Hollywood, Alabama — Police in Hollywood arrested a 78-year-old man on multiple charges related to solicitation of a child. Officers from the Hollywood Police Department received information that Lipham was contacting male juveniles via Facebook messenger soliciting them for inappropriate images and videos.
At Huntsville International Airport in Huntsville, Alabama three airport employees and a Delta Airlines manager helped a 21-year-old girl from an attempted human trafficking incident. The mother of this woman was looking for her car in the parking garage after dropping her daughter off and the Airport Public Relations and Customer Service Manager approached her to help find it. A they were looking she found out that her daughter was going on the plane to meet people for a modeling job. The agent quickly knew that was suspicious, so she met the woman at the gate after her mother described her. The agent tried to get her not to get on the plane, but the 21-year-old is old enough make decisions for herself. A little after, the woman got off the plane saying the modeling agents canceled the flight.
In order to be designated as such a zone, there are three steps the city must take: passing a proclamation declaring the city to be a Human TraffickingFree Zone, undergoing training for city personnel, in particular first responders, as well as businesses in the city, and lastly, a zero tolerance policy for city employees caught purchasing sex at work. The program is managed at the local level by the project, but is an initiative of the U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking.
Alabaster, AL. Mayor Marty Handlon declared January 2020 as Human Trafficking Awareness Month in the city of Alabaster during a City Council meeting on Monday, Dec. 16.