Pomona police officers on patrol along the East Holt Corridor located a 17-year-old girl who was listed as missing and claimed she was a victim of human trafficking, authorities said Saturday.
The girl was loitering Friday and did not appear as though she belonged in the area, according to Corporal Angela Torres of the Pomona Police Department.
“When the officers contacted her, they learned she was only 17 years old and listed as a missing person,” Torres said. “The juvenile began crying when she revealed this information and officers assured her she was safe.”
The teen told police she had been picked up from a friend’s home in another county about a week earlier and taken back and forth between Los Angeles and Pomona, where “she was forced to engage in acts of prostitution with strangers for money. The exploiter collected all of the juvenile’s earnings and forced her to consume narcotics which inhibited her ability to function,” Torres said.
“The juvenile did not have control over her money or her cell phone and did not have the ability to leave her exploiter,” she continued.
The teen was provided with an advocate and released into the custody of the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services, Torres said.
The case was under investigation by the police department’s Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking Team, she said.
Anyone with information was asked to contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888.