|Pimp being held on bail
Alabama manís next hearing slated for Jan. 14; bail set at $250,000
The Alabama man accused of human trafficking in Rohnert Park was held to answer to four felonies following a three-hour preliminary hearing on Wednesday, Jan. 9.
Tyrone Mickens, 30, of Hoover, Ala., has been charged with two counts of pimping and two counts of child endangerment. He is in custody at Sonoma County Jail and is being held on $250,000 bail.
“We will aggressively prosecute those who engage in this practice, which amounts to modern day slavery,” Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch said.
Ravitch also noted how human trafficking has become a growing issue in Sonoma County. Ironically, this case was heard on the same date the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors issued a Resolution recognizing this month as Human Trafficking Awareness Month.
Because of the efforts of the Human Trafficking Task Force, according to Ravitch, there will be billboards placed on Highway 101 advising citizens of the importance of reporting suspected trafficking.
Elicited facts during the hearing revealed Mickens works for a company that employs people to travel to various Walmart stores to restock shelves. Mickens traveled from Alabama, across the country to Oregon, and ultimately to Rohnert Park. During the day, Mickens would work at Walmart, but during the evening, he would pimp two females who were also traveling with him. One of the victims is 18-years-old and the other victim is a minor, 17-years-old.
Officers from the Rohnert Park Dept. of Public Safety began their investigation when the minor victim called 911 after being beaten by Mickens in a hotel room at the Good Nite Inn in Rohnert Park on Dec. 17, 2012.
Noting the youthful appearance of the minor victim and the severity of her facial injuries, officers questioned the second pimping victim and discovered the cross country abuse.
“I have been to Kansas, Texas, Oregon and California” said the juvenile victim said after Mickens was arrested. “All the promises he made me and now I am stuck across the country with no money or way to get home.”
Both victims were taken to an undisclosed location for their safety until they can return home.
Using computer analysis, officers were able to follow the method in which Mickens would advertise the pimping from state to state.
Holding Mickens to answer, Judge Kenneth Gnoss set the case for filing of the information in Department 13 on Jan. 14, 2013, at 8:30 a.m.