Nice home. Nice parents. Nice friends. A safe neighborhood. Shauna is the last person I'd expect to see on the international sex market, yet at $300,000, she was one her way to become one of Texas' most desired prostitutes by no fault of her own. The title of this article was "Sinister Sleepover." If you ask me, "sinister" is a euphemism.
Internal Trafficking often means little distance travelled and Sexual Assault to break down resistance may take place only blocks away from home.Shauna Newell was fortunate when she was abducted two years ago. Thanks to her mother and Klaas’ organization, which organized a search for her, she was rescued after three days. She’s gone public to warn other girls about how easy it is to be kidnapped and trafficked.
A typical 16-year-old in a middle-class home in suburban Pensacola, Fla., Newell’s nightmare began innocently enough: A new friend she had met in high school asked her to come to her home for a sleepover.
Newell’s mother, Lisa Brant, didn’t like the idea, but after weeks of lobbying by her daughter, Brant met with the girl and the man she said was her father to make sure her daughter would be safe.
But the girl’s “father” was really a convicted felon, and the girl, who had a record of prostitution in Texas, was an accomplice in the abduction. “Her dad took us to this house and said he'd be right back and he left us there,” Newell recounted in a taped interview. “And I asked for some water because I was thirsty. And I drank the water and I blacked out.”
The water had been laced with a drug. When she woke up, Newell was groggy and couldn’t move.
“My legs were being held down, and the guy that was raping me was holding my hands back,” she said in a quiet voice. “I kept screaming, ‘Stop, please don't do this. Leave me alone.’ But I was so weak, I couldn't fight them off. Like I was, I was so really out of it. And I blacked out a few times and I kept coming back to. And I was still being raped every time I woke up.”
Left alone for a moment, Newell managed to call her mother.
“My cell phone rang. And all I heard was, ‘Mommy, help me,’ ” Brant said. “And the phone went dead. And I freaked!”Lisa Brant, whose daughter, Shauna Newell, was abducted and gang-raped.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------She called police, but they told her that Newell had probably run away from home, and they wouldn’t be able to treat it as a missing-person case until 72 hours had elapsed.
“He was like, 'Oh, well, you know, there's nothing I can do. You know teenagers,’ ” Brant said.
A stroke of luck
With law enforcement unwilling to act, Brant and Newell’s siblings started their own search. They were fortunate in that Brad Dennis, an investigator for KlaasKids, was based in the area because the Florida Panhandle is an epicenter of human trafficking.
By sheer luck, one search party stopped at a convenience store for something to drink, and Newell’s 14-year-old brother spotted his sister in the back seat of another car that had stopped at the same store. She was rescued, but her abductors managed to flee.
After three days of being raped and beaten and drugged, Newell was dirty, bloody, bruised and barely alive. She was airlifted to a hospital and had to be resuscitated twice. In addition to her serious injuries, she had been infected with an STD.
Newell said that her captor told her she had been sold on the Internet for $300,000 to a man in Texas. Fortunately, she was rescued before delivery could be made. During Newell’s ordeal in Florida, her captor took money from a number of men who raped her. When she screamed, he held a gun to her head and threatened to blow her brains out.
Afraid for her life, Newell later moved in with her boyfriend and now has a child of her own. Her family continues to lobby for national legislation that will provide aid for Americans forced into the sex trade similar to aid that is provided for girls and boys who are brought into the country and forced into prostitution.
Vieira asked Lisa Brant what advice she has for other girls.
“Listen to your parents. Just don’t stop believing. Be strong,” she said. “Follow what your parents say fully, fully. There are people out there who will help you. Speak up. Everybody needs to speak up. Girls that have gone through this, they’re scared."
source of Shauna's story
3.2 miles for Shauna
344.37 miles to date.
G.Q., N.H., and S.O.
Yeu and Dep
Because He first loved me,