Category Archives: Child Pornography

Demand For Sex Slaves Rising

.jpg photo of Sex Slave
Demand For Sex Slaves Rising

Reported sex trafficking cases on the rise
in Indiana, Ohio

FORT WAYNE, IN  –  Young children, abused or neglected at home, run away and get picked up by strangers or even people they thought were their friends… selling them for sex.

It sounds like something straight out of a movie, but it actually happens everywhere.  It could be happening right in your own backyard.

The number of sex trafficking arrests are on the rise in the state of Indiana, but so is the supply and demand of the commercial sex industry.

Trafficking is a form of modern slavery, according to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center.

“This crime occurs when a trafficker uses force, fraud or coercion to control another person for the purpose of engaging in commercial sex acts or soliciting labor or services against his/her will,” says NHTRC.

One may think that sex trafficking only happens in under-developed neighborhoods, or only in other countries.  Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller reiterates that is simply not true, as it happens in any neighborhood, and from any computer or phone.

In Marion County alone, there have been 20 sex traffickers prosecuted and 25 victims rescued just in the past six months.

Zoeller, an advocate for education and the ceasing of sex trafficking in the Hoosier state, says many victims may not even see themselves as victims.  They may experience a phenomenon close to ‘Stockholm Syndrome’ or not know any other life than the toxic one they’re exposed to.

The AG says the victims are not to blame, but the main problem is the business world the traffickers are feeding into.

“This is a growing problem, and one we need to recognize is real. Many people don’t even believe this exists,” says Zoeller.  “I’ve called for the fact that people should be arrested and put in jail, the same way we address drunk driving.  You may lose your job, or at least the respect of your friends and community.  So if we start raising the risk factor, I think we can really take a dent out of the demand that’s out there today.”

Northwest Ohio is also no stranger to human trafficking cases either, as Toledo was once rated fourth in the nation for youth-sex trade due to a high number of FBI busts.  Some local coalition members say the busts are actually a good thing.

According to the NHTRC, there have been 289 human trafficking cases reported just this year.  233 of those cases are sex trafficking.

Even higher is the number of phone calls made to report a potential case: 1066.

Jennifer Wedge, a member of the Lucas County Human Trafficking Coalition, says high numbers is not a bad thing, but quite the opposite.

“If there’s a population center with a lot of identified human trafficking victims, it means something in that area is working,” says Wedge.  “They’re getting them identified and getting them help.  It does happen in every single zip code in our country and in every country around the world.”

Many victims are believed to be missing children.

That’s why Tim Wedge, a Forensics Science professor at Defiance College in Defiance, Ohio (and Jennifer’s husband) wanted to step in and help.

Wedge helped create FAGIN, Facial Analysis to Gain Information Now, a basic crude prototype that he and his students engineered.

FAGIN is designed to take missing person reports with pictures of missing children, run it through the facial analysis software by comparing them to pictures in ads for people being sold for sex online, and produce a report whenever there’s a match.

It even matches old pictures of the children, from the time when they went missing, to an aged picture years later when they’re being sold.

Wedge says FAGIN has the possibility of rescuing a shocking amount of victims.

“If we can take this crude prototype and turn it into a production system, we potentially can rescue every single one [victim] that’s being advertised online.  That possibility exists.  That [number of victims saved] is very likely going to be in the thousands,” Wedge says.

Wedge has showed the prototype to some law enforcement agencies to show how it works and how it can be made into a full production system.

He believes for that to happen, FAGIN needs the resources of law enforcement officers to officially use it for missing children like from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children database, where 800,000 children are reported missing each year.  One in five of them are sex trafficking victims.

Zoeller says knowing the signs of trafficking is prominent in eliminating the epidemic.  Be on the lookout for young girls with an older man and it seems out-of-place.  There might be some bruising or cuts on the victims, they might seem very controlled, looking down and staying quiet, and they might not have identification on them.

Zoeller says these recognizing these red flags and bringing it to someone’s attention could help get someone’s life back.

To report a potential human trafficking case anonymously, call the NHTRC at 1 (888) 373-7888 or send a text to 233733 (Text “HELP” or “INFO”).  Both are available 24/7.

TX Man Arrested For Child Pornography

.jpg photo of man arrested for Child Pornography
Jarrett Palitza, 22, of Adkins Texas

Texas Attorney General:  Man arrested on 6 counts of child pornography possession

A 22-year-old Adkins man was arrested Thursday for allegedly having multiple images of child pornography, including at least one image of a 10-year-old girl, the Office of the Texas Attorney General said Friday.

Jarrett Ray Dwayne Palitza was formally charged on six counts of possession of child pornography after investigators with the Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s Child Exploitation Unit (CEU) conducted a warrant-approved search of his residence in Adkins, which is about 21 miles east of San Antonio.

The CEU became involved initially as assistance to the Sealy Police Department regarding a case of sexual assault of a girl, 10, along with the possibility of a potential possession and distribution of child porn, according to a news release issued Friday.

The search led investigators to Palitza’s home, where child pornography was allegedly discovered.  One of the images was of the 10-year-old girl believed to be involved in the Sealy Police Department case, according to the news release.

“One more dangerous individual is off the streets and behind bars thanks to the efforts of the Child Exploitation Unit and the Sealy Police Department,” Paxton said in a news release.  “My office will remain steadfast in protecting our children and our communities from the heinous acts of these child predators and continue seeking justice against them.”

Is Your Family Really Secure?

.jpg photo of Mobile Phone graphic for Child Safety
Internet, Mobile Phone, and Texting safety Tips for Parents and Children

Apple and Android continue to leave customer vulnerable

Apple says their latest (tiny????) hole in security, that left Iphone users’ pictures out for all to see and copy, is patched up.

Android has had a serious design flaw in their software since inception, and while not as bad, we as yet have no answer to how many updates  to the OS will be needed to close this hole.

Children need parental supervision from the day they are born to the day they turn 18-years-of-age.  All it takes is one minute alone with the wrong person to seriously alter their once-bright future.

Be the parent your Child deserves.

Internet, Mobile Phones, and Texting Safety Tips for Kids

  • Do not post personal information online (name, age, birth date, address, telephone number, or school name).  This information can be used by others to find out where you and your family live.
  • Do not post your picture or pictures of your family online – they can be copied or changed or used to find you.
  • Do not send any inappropriate photo or message by email or text.
  • Do not post your plans and activities in a chat room or on your personal website.
  • Do not post entries that make it clear that no one is at your home.
  • Do not communicate with someone who has made you uncomfortable or afraid. Tell your parents or a trusted adult if someone does.
  • Do not join online groups or games without talking to your parents.
  • Do not meet with someone you met online without first telling your parents or guardian.
  • Do not post hurtful or inappropriate messages.  If someone else posts hurtful or inappropriate messages — do not respond, but do tell a teacher, parent or other adult.
  • Do not click on any link that you do not know, and you are not sure is legitimate.
  • Do not buy any “apps” or “in app” purchases without talking to your parents or guardian.
  • Do not enable any location services without talking to your parents or guardian.
  • Do remember that people can lie online and say they are something they are not.  Someone who says they are a 12-year-old girl could really be an older man looking to harm you.
  • Do save messages that upset you and show them to your parents.
  • Do share your password with your parents.
  • Do visit http://www.netsmartz.org/ to learn more about Internet safety.

Internet, Mobile Phones, and Texting Safety Tips for Parents

  • Do teach your child not to post identifying information on the Internet.
  • Do set a limit for how much time your child can spend online.
  • Do keep the computer in a public room in the house.  Do not have an Internet-connected computer in your child’s bedroom.
  • Do utilize parental controls provided by your Internet Service Provider and/or blocking software. (Contact your Internet ISP if you have questions).
  • Do talk to your children about purchasing “in app” products.
  • Do talk to your child about using any location services on their device.
  • Do periodically review your child’s computer, emails and messages.  You should have all of your children’s passwords.
  • Do spend time with your child online.  Have them show you their favorite online destinations.  Get to know your child’s online friends as you would their real-life friends.  Learn to navigate the web.
  • Do know who they text and email.  Most providers have online ways to identify frequent contacts so you can see if someone new appears as a contact.
  • Do monitor your child’s access to the Internet and texting.
  • Do talk to your child about the danger of Internet predators.
  • Do watch for unexplained changes in your child’s behavior.
  • Do NOT hesitate to seek help from law enforcement if you think a predator may be targeting your child.

For more helpful Internet safety information, please visit http://www.netsmartz.org/.   Netsmartz.org has age appropriate videos, activities, and information for students in elementary school, middle school, and high school.

Resources:
United States Department of Justice

Complete Absence Of Any Supervision

.jpg photo of Child Pornographer
Deonte Carraway, 22

Serial Child Abuse Alleged at Maryland School

By ROSE BOUBOUSHIAN

UPPER MARLBORO, MD  (CN)  –  A Maryland elementary school choir director persuaded dozens of children to perform sexual acts on camera by telling them they were part of a “club,” a mother claims in a class action.

Jane Doe No. 2 sued the Prince George’s County Board of Education, elementary school principal Michelle Williams, and the alleged molester, teacher assistant Deonte Carraway, on Feb. 11 in Prince George’s County Court.

A second mother, Jane Doe. No. 1, filed a similar complaint, which was not a class action.

Carraway, 22, was arrested on Feb. 6 and charged with 10 counts of felony child pornography and sexual abuse.

He worked for the Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School in Glenarden as a paid teacher’s assistant from November 2014 to September 2015, then as an unpaid volunteer, according to the complaints.

According to the class action, “On multiple occasions, Carraway coerced John Doe No. 2 to engage in sexual acts with him on school property during school hours.”

Carraway also made the boy “engage in sexual acts with him on multiple occasions at the Glenarden Municipal Center” at Friday night choir practice, the mother says.

Carraway scheduled meetings with and sent photos and videos to John Doe 2 through the smartphone app Kik, which allows people to send anonymous photos and messages, Doe’s mother says.

Carraway’s predations began in early 2015 went on until January this year, when another student’s uncle “discovered that Carraway had been communicating with his nephew and other children on Kik,” the complaint states.

“The student’s uncle saw that there were inappropriate pictures of students that were sent through Kik.”

The uncle notified principal Williams on Feb. 4 this year and called police that night, according to the complaint.  County police then found four SIM cards from Carraway’s cellphone.

“On just one of the SIM cards, there were at least 44 recordings of sexual acts involving children,” the complaint states.

It continues: “Upon information and belief, on some of the recordings, Carraway can be seen or heard directing the children to perform certain sexual acts.

“Upon information and belief, one of the recordings is of a child performing a sexual act on Carraway in a school bathroom while he recorded the act on his cellphone.

“The obscene recordings on Carraway’s phone range from 8-second clips to videos running over a minute.”

So brazen was Carraway that he would call students out of class and tell them they “would be participating in a ‘club’ with him to help persuade them to engage in these sexual acts on camera,” the complaint states.

His victims were as young as 9, and “the number of victims is at least 10, but it may be as many as 30,” according to the complaint.

Doe’s mom says that Carraway’s sexual abuse was “common knowledge among the students.”

She says that although parents and teachers “expressed concern” about Carraway’s “predatory behavior,” principal Williams took no action, claiming they had “no proof.”

Doe blames the “complete absence of any supervision and oversight of his conduct.”

Doe seeks class certification and damages for Title IX violations, other civil rights violations, violations of Maryland human rights law, negligent supervision, intentional infliction of emotional distress, invasion of privacy, and battery.

She is represented by Timothy Maloney with Joseph, Greenwald & Laake in Greenbelt, who represents Jane Doe No. 1 in her lawsuit against the same defendants.

Attorney Maloney said the criminal and civil cases are just beginning.

“The shocking events at Sylvania Woods Elementary revealed a profound breach of trust,” Maloney said in an email Sunday.

Almost all of the nearly 700 students at Sylvania Woods are black and Latino and/or qualify for free or reduced-price lunch, according to The Washington Post.

Authorities have identified 17 victims so far, 9 to 13 years old, according to the Post.

Principal Williams is on paid leave, and Carraway is being held on a $1 million bond.

It is far from unusual in complaints such as this for parents to claim that school administrators knew of or had reason to know of a teacher’s abuse, but failed to take action.

“Ruining someone’s career can be actionable,” one attorney with knowledge of such cases told Courthouse News.  “Failing to ruin someone’s career is less actionable.”

Principal Placed On Leave

.jpg photo of school where Children were abused.
School where volunteer videotaped and sexually assaulted Children.

FBI assisting in school volunteer Child Porn
investigation

GLENARDEN, MD  –   On Wednesday, the principal of a school where a volunteer allegedly took videos of children performing sex acts, was placed on administrative leave.

This announcement came a day after the FBI joined in the investigation into 22-year-old Deonte Carraway who faces charges of producing child pornography and child sexual abuse.

Prince George’s County police said Carraway took videos of children performing the sex acts on each other and that it happened during the school day on school grounds.

Police also say Carraway used his phone installed with the Kik messaging app to record children as young as 9 years old.  Some of the videos were filmed at his direction while Carraway is a participant in others.

One of the videos is shot inside a bathroom at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School in Glenarden.

Police have been onto Carraway since last Thursday night and have expanded the investigation to include the FBI.

In a news release, the FBI said:

“The FBI Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force and the Prince George’s County Police Department are investigating an elementary school volunteer and community choir director for producing child pornography and child sexual abuse.  Prince George’s County Police detectives arrested 22-year-old Deonte Carraway on February 5, after a victim’s relative found a nude photo on the child’s phone.  The FBI has set up its hotline 1-800-CALL-FBI for anyone to use if they believe they know a victim, or have any information that may help investigators in this case.

“Investigators say the suspect targeted victims and videotaped sexual acts between minors during the school day at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School in Glenarden.  They believe sex abuse and/or child pornography was also produced at the Glenarden Municipal Center, Theresa Banks Memorial Aquatic Center as well as in private homes.

“If you or anyone you know is concerned about a possible victim in this case, you are asked to call 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324). You may also call the Prince George’s County Police Department’s Child and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Unit at 301-772-4930.”

“At this point, we know there are at least ten victims,” said Prince George’s County police spokesperson Julie Parker.  “Our concern is that number could grow and could grow by a large amount.  We don’t know that yet.  We are not there yet and that is why there is so much time and resources devoted to this – to figure out how big of an investigation we are dealing with.”

According to a source familiar with the investigation, Carraway came to the city of Glenarden in 2014 and asked if he could start a choir and rehearse inside the Glenarden Municipal Center.  It is a choir made up of young children from 9 to 13 years old.

The 22-year-old also did some work with children across the street at the Theresa Banks Memorial Aquatic Center.  No one at the center would comment on what exactly Carraway did there.

He was also a volunteer at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School and lived in Glenarden with his mother at an apartment on Glenarden Parkway.

“We have received about 20 phone calls from the community, several of them being tips regarding Deonte Carraway,” said Parker.

No one with Prince George’s County Public Schools would go on camera on Tuesday.  But in a statement, the school system said officials are shocked by the allegations and said, “Employees and volunteers go through a proper screening process.”

Police said Carraway used the Kik messaging app to communicate with the kids and others.  A nude photo sent through Kik on a victim’s phone was discovered by a relative of the victim and sparked this investigation.

Of the victims in this case, some of them are students at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School.  Police said videos were also made at the Glenarden Municipal Center and the Theresa Banks Memorial Aquatic Center.

On Tuesday, many in this Prince George’s County school community expressed outrage over this news.  It has also become clear that many parents had been concerned about Carraway’s behavior towards their children.

One parent at the school told us he has had concerns about Carraway acting overly familiar with kids, especially after his son told him that Carraway had been showing students self-made boxing and mixed martial arts videos on his phone as well as videos of his home.

“Always!  You come here around 8 p.m. and he’s always around 7-Eleven, always doing something,” said Neftali Ardueta.  “He’s telling my kid, ‘Oh, you can come to my church,’ and I’m like, ‘You are not going to his church.’

Throughout the day on Tuesday, there was a constant police presence at the elementary school.  A Prince George’s County Public Schools spokesperson said that the school’s vice principal asked for that added security after the media arrived on school property.

But all of the media got an earful from parents wanting to know how a man in their own child’s school was allegedly able to produce child pornography here without anyone knowing about it until Carraway’s arrest.  They said they are upset, hurt and worried that the ten victims identified so far may just be the start.

“I had to talk to my child to make sure that my children understand that if something were to happen to them, make sure they tell,” said Riva Thomas.  “And that’s not a conversation I don’t think we are supposed to have in school.”

“It’s sad and heartbreaking that kids have to keep going through this,” said another parent.  “And as parents, we have to step up and be more aware of what our kids are doing.”