Rhode Island: women held against their will in an apartment and forced into prostitution


Four women were held against their will in a Providence apartment for months, victims of human trafficking.

A Massachusetts man is at the ACI, charged with kidnapping and raping the women, as well as sex trafficking.

Police say it’s a horrific situation that went on for months. The victims were too afraid to call for help.

According to police, four women and their children were being held against their will inside one of the units of an apartment building in Providence. They were sexually assaulted and pimped out for weeks until, finally, the mother of one of the girls called police.

Up the stairs and inside unit 8, police say four women from Massachusetts were sexually assaulted, forced into prostitution, and held against their will for months by 27-year-old Javann Hall.

Providence Police Inspector Marc Cameron describes one of the victims’ stories. “She stated that she met Hall as he recruited her to make money for him as a pimp/prostitute enterprise,” explained Cameron.

None of the victims made any money, and no one in the building ABC6 News spoke to had any idea what had gone on. That’s likely because the women were scared silent.

Police say the women were constantly threatened with harm to themselves and their children if they went to the police, or attempted to contact any friends, or escape. The women were between the ages of 18 and 22.

Two children lived inside the apartment belonging to two of the women.

Police say 3 of them initially agreed to the prostitution. They knew Hall through prior relationships or acquaintances, but were later held against their will. One of the women never had a choice. She was kidnapped at gunpoint, but at some point found a way to contact her mother. It was that girl’s mom who made the 911 call Friday night, sending officers to 745 Cranston Street.

Detective Michael Correia says the women broke down as soon as they knew Hall was in police custody and they were safe.

“You have to have a little empathy. These are young, vulnerable girls, probably low self-esteem, financially dependent, they’re victims,” said Correia.

Detective Correia went on to say none of the women or children had physical injuries. Instead, the damage was emotional.

As soon as the Inspector laid out the details of what the girls went through at Hall’s arraignment Monday morning, the judge had had enough.

Inspector Cameron said, “the victim told police that Mr. Hall had forced her to have sex with him and that she told him, “no” on several occasions.”

Providence police are investigating why Hall, of Dorchester, brought the Massachusetts women to Providence to operate the prostitution scheme. They are also searching for any more of Hall’s victims as well as his customers.

Hall is charged with four counts of kidnapping, four counts pandering, three counts of 1st degree sexual assault, three counts of simple assault, and three counts trafficking for commercial sexual activity. Hall is being held at the ACI without bail until his next court appearance on September 10th.

Source:  ABC6.com, Human Trafficking News Daily

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