Sex Trafficking victim speaks about healing after FBI raids

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

ST. LOUIS, MO. (KTVI) - It was a long weekend for FBI agents who conducted a 3- day sweep across 76 cities.

Investigators found themselves busting up a series of teen prostitution rings.

Agents rescued 105 kids between 13 and 17 years old. Three of the victims are from the St. Louis area. FOX 2 caught up with trafficking survivor Katie Rhoades, who was lured into a prostitution ring at 18. She escaped after three years of abuse. Rhoades, 32 she says life is good, but the emotional scars are still there. Rhoades and victims advocate Lindsey Ellis of the Covering House of St. Louis say pimps use weakness techniques to trap teenage girls and boys from all walks of life.

"They make it a point of getting to know you. It can be a couple of hours it can be an afternoon its really finding out what makes you tick and they figure out how to exploit that." Said Rhodes

"We try to work with them on their trauma.  I think the overall goal is to help them with what we call the reconnection stage its getting them back to the community let them have their own voice." Said Ellis

In all 150 pimps and associates were locked up and the FBI says the investigation is part of an ongoing effort. The sweep targeted truck stops, casinos, and escort websites. The Covering House of St. Louis helps victims recover by offering counseling, group therapy and foster care.

Link:

Previous Story:

Follow Shawndrea Thomas on Twitter and Facebook:
Shawndrea Thomas On Twitter  
Shawndrea Thomas On Facebook  
Email: shawndrea.thomas@tvstl.com