Teen accused of sex trafficking 13-year-old girl - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Teen accused of sex trafficking 13-year-old girl

Posted: Updated:
The sex trafficking indictment stemmed from Butler's arrest last February when a 911 caller told police Butler was beating the young girl in the middle of the street on the 2900 block of North Watkins Street. The sex trafficking indictment stemmed from Butler's arrest last February when a 911 caller told police Butler was beating the young girl in the middle of the street on the 2900 block of North Watkins Street.
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - A 19-year-old man was indicted on charges of sex trafficking after police say he forced a 13-year-old girl into prostitution.

Zandravious Butler is in the Shelby County Jail on a $30,000 bond. He has been in jail since February of last year, but Thursday he was indicted on charges that he advertised and then forced a 13-year-old girl to commit sex acts for money.

It is a crime that is happening across the city, more often that you might expect.

The Ed Rice Community Center is a safe place for young people to hang out in Frayser.

"This is a good gym to come play ball, no arguing, no fighting, or nothing going on up here," said Ardarius Beas.

Just across the street from the community center, a teenager was arrested for trafficking another teen.

"I think it's terrible, I think the world has come to a very bad place. And it's wrong. It's wrong to traffic anybody at any age," said Patti Albright, who lives in the neighborhood.

According to a police affadavit, 19-year-old Zandravious Butler advertised a 13-year-old girl on a social media website called MoccoSpace, charging customers $30 to $50 to have sex with her.

The sex trafficking indictment stemmed from Butler's arrest last February when a 911 caller told police Butler was beating the young girl in the middle of the street on the 2900 block of North Watkins Street.

The girl told police she had been staying with Butler and that he was beating her because she no longer wanted to work as a prostitute.

Kimberly Benson, president of A Bridge Of Hope, works tirelessly to rescue woman and teens from human trafficking. She says it is happening everywhere and many woman feel trapped.

"It's all happening right here in your own community, it's not some third world nation. It's not just poor people, it's not just one type of another," said Benson. "It happens to rich or poor, one side of the track or another."

The problem can be stopped, she says, if more people come forward and report suspicous activity.

"Our culture has become one of those don't ask, don't tell kind of cultures. But it's also if it doesn't directly effect me then I'm not going to say anything," added Benson.

But talk with neighbors in Frayser and the will tell you it is not always that easy.

"Around here, if you report somebody they're gonna retaliate," said Albright. "If they know that you're ratting them out, they will do something, they will retaliate."

Benson says there is new legislation being proposed in Tennessee that could require everyone to report abuse of a minor of any kind.

"That's unthinkable, to sell it for 5 cents or$5,000, you don't sell a person, especially a kid. A human being," said Albright.

Get the latest from Action News 5 anytime: iPhone | iPad | Android | SMS Alerts | Email Alerts | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Copyright 2014 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow