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One Wrong Move Leads Florida Teen Into Human Trafficking Nightmare | NewsRadio WIOD

NEW PORT RICHEY — A 16-year-old girl who ran away from home was thrown into a nightmare while being passed between several men, including convicted sex offenders. They put her in hotels and made her work in strip clubs even after she told them her age. Now a dozen men and women face indictments in a massive human trafficking case.

Pasco detectives say the girl ran away to start a relationship with a pool cleaner who worked at her guardian’s home. She was taken away by a registered sex offender. From there it gets worse.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody, Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco and Hernando Sheriff Al Nienhuis were present at a news conference to announce the charges. The story being told by the Pasco and Hernando deputies is so complex that we include the verbatim press release from the Pasco sheriff below:

Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco announced a series of arrests in a major human trafficking case stemming from a 16-year-old survivor. Sheriff Nocco was assisted by Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis as his agency assisted PSO in the case.

Although January was Human Trafficking Awareness Month, the work of members of the Pasco Sheriff’s Office never stops bringing justice and resources to the survivors of this terrible scourge. The case announced today began on November 21, 2022 when the survivor ran away and PSO was reported missing. PSO recovered the survivor on December 4 and she claimed to have been a human trafficking survivor at the time. Detectives then discovered what this young human had endured and survived in just two weeks.

The survivor began a friendship with Steven Graham, who was hired to clean the survivor’s guardian’s pool in late 2021. This relationship turned sexual in June 2022 and lasted for several months. On November 21, 2022, the survivor got into an argument with her guardian and ran away from her home in New Port Richey to reconnect with Graham. Shortly after she left, she was picked up by Mark Poore, who is a registered sex offender. Poore, who had no prior relationship or interaction with the survivor, was sexually active with her and then provided her with a ride and a meal. After dropping the survivor in the area of ​​US 19 and SR 54, Poore walked to the area of ​​Graham’s home but was unable to reach him. Instead, she met John Malley, who offered to let her shower at his home but would not allow her to stay with him. During this time they were involved in sexual acts.

Afterward, Malley drives the survivor to the 7-11 at US 19 and Moog Rd., where she eventually meets up with Graham. At 7-11, the survivor meets Deontre Poole, who gives her his phone number. Graham then drives her to a closed Golden Corral to have sex. The survivor then turns to Malley to take her again and he picks her up from the same 7-11. Malley then takes the survivor to Walmart at US 19 and Ridge Rd. where he buys her makeup and clothes. He then takes her back to his house and they engage in sexual behavior again after she reveals to him that she is 16 years old. After Malley tells her she can’t stay with him, she calls Poole to pick her up.

After Poole picks up the survivor, they drive around taking drugs and conducting drug sales. They end up driving to the Rodeway Inn near the intersection of US 19 and SR 52. Poole gets them a room and they engage in sexual behavior. Poole then leaves the survivor alone at the hotel.

On November 22, while the survivor is at the hotel, she meets and engages in sexual activity with Branden Dunn and Alan Schiavo. She then meets Timothy Colon at the hotel and they engage in a sexual act in Colon’s car. She informs Colon of her age and he tells her to say she is 20 if anyone asks her how old she is.

At around 2 am on November 23, Colon reunites with the survivor and drives her to a bar in the Hudson area. After a brief stay there, Colon takes her to his home in the Spring Hill area of ​​Hernando County, where they resume sexual activity and use drugs. Candice Tekdogan, an acquaintance of Colon’s, meets Colon and the survivor at Colon’s home, where they engage in sexual activity together. Colon and Tekdogan then take the survivor to Colon’s second home in the Seven Springs area of ​​New Port Richey and again engage in videotaped sexual activity together. Tekdogan then takes the survivor to Tekdogan’s home in the Spring Hill area of ​​Hernando County.

Between November 23 and December 4, when the survivor is recovered, the survivor mostly stays with Tekdogan at her home in Spring Hill. Tekdogan helps provide the survivor with wigs, clothing, and an alias. Tekdogan also helped the survivor connect with adult facilities in Pasco and Pinellas counties. While working at one of these facilities, the survivor met Jaimi Manning and engaged in sexual activity with him in the VIP area. Manning and the survivor exchange contact information and Manning travels to Tekdogan’s house to engage in sexual activity in Manning’s car outside Tekdogan’s house.

The survivor also meets Jeremy Francis at an adult entertainment establishment, where they begin texting each other. Francis also travels to Tekdogan’s home to engage in sexual contact with the survivor. Graham also meets the survivor at an adult entertainment establishment, where he pays for sexual activity with her. The survivor also meets up with Jeremy Nanos-Sky at a bar. The survivor overhears Nanos-Sky telling him that he is a record producer and she tells him that she is a singer. They exchange contact information and the next day, Nanos-Sky travels to Tekdogan’s house and picks up the survivor. They then travel back to Nanos-Sky’s home in Port Richey, where she stays the night and engages in sexual activity with him.

Sometime on December 2, Tekdogan throws a party at her Spring Hill home. A co-worker takes Pierre Williams to the house party. Williams is told by Colon that if Colon wanted to engage in sexual activity with the survivor, Colon could make this possible. Colon is seen telling the survivor to engage in sexual activity with Williams, and she reluctantly does so.

On December 3, Tekdogan leaves her home, but the survivor remains there. Another person approaches Tekdogan while she works as an exotic dancer at an adult entertainment company and shows her the missing person’s social media post from the Pasco Sheriff’s Office, which states that the survivor is 16 years old. Tekdogan calls Graham and tells him to get the survivor out of her home. Graham takes the survivor to the La Vista Inn in Port Richey, next to the Rodeway Inn. Graham rents the survivor a room and leaves her there. Tekdogan then calls to report the whereabouts of the survivors to the PSO, where officers recover and take her into protective custody after realizing she was heavily intoxicated.

While the missing persons investigation was complete when the survivor was recovered, investigations into her activities during her disappearance began immediately. This survivor was surrounded by many adults during her absence, but none of them cared about her safety and well-being. Instead, they exploited them for their own amusement. The survivor told the suspects her age, but these people didn’t care.

Instead, they saw this person as something they could use, regardless of their age. They took her to other places because of these terrible deeds; from adult facilities, to their homes, to the homes of their friends and now co-defendants. The survivor stated that she did these things because she needed food or shelter. She was not treated as a child or even as a person during this time.

In all, PSO arrested 12 men and women who had abandoned this 16-year-old girl. The most recent arrest in this case was on January 30, 2023. In addition to human trafficking charges, these 12 suspects face charges including housing, unlawful sex with certain minors, abusing a child in sexual performances, traveling to meet a minor, and possession of child pornography. We are also grateful for the assistance of the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance in completing a search warrant on Colon’s home. The survivor was immediately connected to community-based resources through PSO’s Victim Advocates.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said: “Thanks to the hard work of Sheriff Nocco, Sheriff Nienhuis and their dedicated deputies, a minor has been rescued from traffickers. Those who abused the victim face serious charges, and my state attorneys-at-law will ensure justice is served.”

Sheriff Nienhuis also spoke about the importance of reporting anything suspicious, including suspected human trafficking. In addition, he spoke about the importance of law enforcement working together to solve cases like this quickly.

This case is not yet closed. Although PSO has made several arrests, there is still work to be done and this investigation is ongoing. PSO remains committed to fighting the scourge of human trafficking in our region.

Photo: Pasco Sheriff’s Office

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