On January 16, 2016, a trucker noticed something odd and disturbing while at a PILOT truck stop outside of Richmond, Virginia.
Kevin Kimmel said he:
"Saw what looked like a young girl looking out the window, the black drapes didn't make it look like a families' RV, you know," Kimmel told CBS affiliate WTVR. "I saw a guy come up and knock on the door then go inside the Pilot-then quickly came back and knocked again, all of the sudden the thing was rocking and rolling."
Kimmel called the police, but what he didn’t know was the young girl was not only a victim of sex trade, she was also a victim of torture. An Iowa couple, Aldair Hodza, 36, and Laura Sorensen, 31, have been charged with human trafficking. The victim was found starved, disheveled and had evidence of extreme physical abuse, sexual abuse — and torture.
The details of the young victim’s torture are inhumane and Kimmel most likely saved this victim’s life. Here is a YouTube video from CBS WTVR News reporting more about the story. (Trigger Warning)
Kimmel, who is a father and grandfather, says he was not aware of the torture details until later and at the time, thought of his daughter and granddaughter. There is an organization called Truckers Against Trafficking that trains truck drivers to recognize signs that might help save other lives. You can visit their site HERE.
Victims of human sex trafficking are often right in front of us at truck stops, massage parlors, hotels, salons … they are held captive through coercion, force and threats. There are an estimated 20.9 million victims of human slavery, with 1.5 million in North America. Sex-trafficking is often the most common and most lucrative crime. An estimated $150 billion is made by human traffickers, just under the number one crime of drug trafficking.
TED talk speaker Tony Talbott makes an incredibly disturbing summation about sex trafficking:
"It's all about the money. Human trafficking is insanely profitable. If you really think about it; You can sell a kilo of Heroin once; You can sell a 13-year-old girl 20 times a night, 365 days a year.”