It’s highly debated whether or not a large event like the Super Bowl increases human trafficking and prostitution in the area where it’s held. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen. For example, take 33-year-old Justin Beard, of Branson, Missouri. Beard was in Minneapolis in order to work some of the public events leading up to the big game. Police say Beard allegedly tried to purchase two kids off of craigslist for the purpose of sex, or as I call it, child rape.
Beard is said to have responded to a craigslist ad from a father who claimed to be offering his 15-year-old daughter and 13-year-old son for sex. In exchange, Beard would provide the man with tickets to the events he was working worth $100. Thankfully, the man behind the craigslist ad was actually an undercover investigator.
As I’ve said before, if police are apprehending one guy looking for kids, there are others there who police haven’t caught yet. Human trafficking and child prostitution are real problems that affect all locations and social classes thanks to the worldwide reach of sites like craigslist. Craigslist refuses to moderate their own site and don’t tell me it’s impossible. If Backpage can monitor and edit their ads for illegal content, then craigslist is surely able to at least monitor their site for illegal ads.
Dominick Floyd Halverson
19-year-old Dominick Floyd Halverson, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, has been arrested for posting revenge porn online. Halverson is accused of posting nude pics of his ex on Snapchat after their relationship ended. He’s looking at three years behind bars and a $5,000 fine.
First off to the ladies, unless you’ve been in a relationship for years, don’t send nudes to any guy unless you’re ok with them being out on the internet forever. To guys, learn how to handle rejection like a man. If someone breaks up with you, move on. It might hurt like hell, but move on. You’ll be better off in the long run. Also don’t think you’re getting away with it by posting revenge porn on Snapchat. You may think the pictures disappear like Snapchat claims, but they don’t. That’s not even mentioning that the majority of states in the country have revenge porn laws that carry a decent amount of prison time. Is sharing nudes of your ex really worth a stretch in jail?
Raymond Andrew Berg
Minneapolis police say that registered sex offender Raymond Andrew Berg allegedly placed an ad on craigslist that seemed to be targeted to homeless or runaway girls.
According to the criminal complaint, the Minneapolis Police Department got a tip about the ad on Saturday, Nov. 7, which said, “Homeless? Had a fight with parents or bf? Need a place to stay tonight?” The ad offered free rent, rides, food and “whatever u need” if “you help me,” according to the complaint.
Police responded to the ad posing as a 15-year-old girl where police say he asked the girl for phone sex. I guess his intentions weren’t just for helping someone off the street. Berg was arrested at a pre-determined meeting place.
As I said recently that this is an everyday occurrence on craigslist and they refuse to do anything about it. While this time there was no actual girl that doesn’t mean that victims are being preyed upon every day by people like this on craigslist. Do they all have to be 4-years-old for anyone to care?
25-year-old Dontre D’Sean McHenry of St. Paul, Minnesota, was arrested in Minneapolis by Homeland Security for allegedly trafficking three minor girls ages 15-17 on Backpage and Facebook for the purposes of prostitution. The 15-year-old was a runaway while the 17-year-old was said to have recruited the 16-year-old.
McHenry is facing 10 to life but somehow I think it will be closer to the 10 then the life. While the government may talk a big game about human trafficking they rarely put the sentencing behind their words.
I’m sure Backpage kept the money that was used to advertise these girls.
UPDATE 2/9/2016: McHenry was sentenced to almost 25 years in prison and will be subject to supervised release until his death. As far as sentences for traffickers go it’s a start. A vast improvement from what they normally get.
Meranda L. Warborg
2 runaways are found via sex ads on website:
Dead behind the eyes meth face up there is 29-year-old Meranda L. Warborg of Minneapolis, Minnesota. She’s been charged with assisting others in prostituting two teenage runaways on the Village Voice Media owned Backpage.com.
The girls, ages 15 and 17, ran away from Eau Claire Wisconsin and met a guy named ‘E’ when they got to Minneapolis who started pimping them out. The girls were supplied with drugs and had explicit photos taken of them so they could be turned out on Backpage. This is beginning to be so repetitive in these stories I could write up a script that would type the same sentence and all I would have to change are the names and locations.
Police say that Warborg is not the pimp but rather an accomplice to whoever was turning these girls out. As far as I know their pimp has not yet been apprehended.
Along with many other cities and states Minneapolis has called on Backpage to shut down the adult section of their site but they just continue to act like they’re part of the solution and not the problem.
Charges: Elko Man Paid for Sex With Teenagers:
36-year-old Mickey Cupkie of Elko, Minnesota was recently arrested for allegedly paying to have sex with two minor girls that were advertised on the Village Voice Media owned backpage.com.
The girls were 16 and 17-year-old runaways. The girls were being investigated by Minneapolis police as victims of sex trafficking and they were able to determine that Cupkie was one of their customers. Police say that he admitted to knowing that the girls were “too young to be engaging in prostitution.” Apparently that didn’t stop him from getting his money’s worth.
This story brings up a few points. First the obvious ones. Backpage’s supposed screening process to keep kids off of their site is obviously not working no matter how much Liz McDougall wants you to think it is. Secondly, let’s call this crime what it is, paid child rape. When you use a child prostitute you’re basically paying to rape them. Lastly, we don’t see nearly enough stories about the johns who are raping these girls. Not only do they need to be named and shamed they need to be given stiff sentences with real jail time. Only when you make the risk not worth the reward will you be able to put a good-sized dent in child sex trafficking.
UPDATE 9/3/2012: Cupkie has pleaded guilty and will be sentenced in November.
Akmal Saleem Karon
Man Charged with 8 Counts of Prostituting Young Girls:
30-year-old Akmal Saleem Karon of Minneapolis has been charged with prostituting a 16-year-old girl on the Village Voice Media owned backpage.com.
When caught in a sting by police the victim was covered in bruises. She told police that she met Karon when she was 15 and that he kept all her money. She also said that Karon would beat her and even burnt her with a cigar.
Karon is also charged with holding a 14-year-old girl against her will, beating her and forcing her to turn tricks. No word on if this girl was advertised on backpage but I wouldn’t doubt it.
Backpage will tell you that this is all ok if the girls were advertised on another site besides backpage while they count their mountains of cash.
UPDATE 2/2/2012: Turns out he raped the girls as well. But backpage is still ok with that.
Man accused of pimping teen girl online:
28-year-old Malachai Tramble II of Minneapolis has been charged with prostituting a 17-year-old girl on the Village Voice Media owned backpage.com. He’s also been charged with possession of child porn since he is alleged to have taken explicit pictures of the girl to post on backpage’s ‘adult’ section. Isn’t that some irony there?
A 22-year-old woman who has pleaded guilty to assisting Tramble in turning out the girl said that she worked for Tramble as a prostitute. However she claims that she was raped by Tramble while she was unconscious and he took explicit pictures of her and her social security and state ID cards. She says she was in fear of what Tramble might have done with that information.
Goes against the whole ‘consenting adults’ bullcrap doesn’t it?
VVM and backpage are still scum by the way. They made money off of this 17-year-old girl and have made money on girls that were much younger.
UPDATE 3/17/2012: Tramble pleaded no contest and is only looking at 8 1/2 years.
UPDATE 5/13/2012: Tramble got the 8 1/2 years and will be on the sex offender registry for 10 years.
Parents Arrested After Baby Left In Hot Car:
Sometimes, although it’s rare, I can understand one parent leaving a child in a hot car accidentally. But two? That’s no accident. That’s a testament to extreme human stupidity.
In Minneapolis, Minnesota Angel Rigoberto Garcia-Tapia, 34, and Rosa Dejesus Perez-Siguencia, 35, were arrested after leaving their infant in their car while they went into a CVS for 20 minutes. It was 94F/34C in Minneapolis at the time.
Think about that for a second. There were two of them. That means they both made a conscience decision to loeave their infant in a car during a hot July day. How fucking stupid do you need to be. These fucking idiots should have their kid taken away and never be allowed to reproduce to prevent future fucking morons from being unleashed on an already stupid society.
Thanks to Chantel for the tip.
Minneapolis Human Rights Group Declines Craigslist Money:
In a move that can be seen as a slap in the face to craigslist a Minneapolis human rights group rejected am unsolicited $25K grant from the craigslist foundation.
The Advocates for Human Rights rejected the grant because of craigslist’s pitiful record of attempting to combat human trafficking on its site.
“While The Advocates appreciates the recognition of its work, it cannot accept the funds because Craigslist generates a high percentage of its profits from adult ads,” the organization said in a statement “This market fuels the human sex trafficking industry. It is the exploitive behavior resulting from these ads that makes our efforts necessary.”
Or as I call it the craigslist conundrum.
Since the NY Times article came out that claimed craigslist is making a large chunk of money off of its sex ads we’ll be seeing more of these advocacy groups turning craigslist’s money away.
I’m sure Jim Buckmaster isn’t probably too broken up about it. That’s more money he gets to keep.