Advertisement

Parents plead for justice, warn others about young girls being lured for sex through social media

Girls befriended another teen who encouraged them to runaway
A worker at a northwest Charlotte was tied up and assaulted in a tobacco shop.
Published: May. 18, 2022 at 3:42 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Three young girls, lured away from home with the promise of a carefree life, found themselves being taken advantage of, manipulated, and used for sex. Today those girls and their parents are speaking out as a warning to others.

Two of these girls were 14, one was 11, when someone they befriended on social media made them an offer they didn’t want to refuse. Only later did they learn what the real motive appears to have been.

“Most of it is all fake and they just use you for your body,” one of the girls said.

“I wouldn’t wish it on anyone,” said another.

What does the predator tell them to get them away from home?

“They have been convinced that there is freedom out there, that they don’t have to abide by any rules and they’re going to give them all kind of trophies, I mean everything for them, so they don’t have to stay at home.” said Elia Gegorek, and advocate for the families. “Before you know it they are convinced that they have a friend on the other side and then these people come and abduct them, they abduct these teenagers when they realize what is happening it is too late for them.”

But once they are in the company of the predator, all of the promises disappear.

“You just go there and they use you and then just like sell you or send you with their other friends and that’s what happened to me,” one of the girls said. “It makes you feel worthless.”

Then, if the girls want to leave, the predator makes threats.

“That teenager starts believing if I don’t do what this person tells me my father is going to get killed. They have no other choice but to go with them,” Gegorek added.

“And he say, if you’re not coming with me, I’m going to kill your dad, I’m going to kill your mom,” the father of one of the girls said.

Salisbury Police confirm that this happened to these girls, and they admit that charging the predator in this case is difficult because he is also a juvenile.

“That person passes them to other adults,” Gegorek said.

Families say they are frustrated because they often feel like no one is taking them seriously when they report their child missing. These three young girls were fortunate.

“They want the law to believe them,: Gegorek added. This is not just a child that is running away, it’s a missing person, and help us, okay?”

Through the work of the families, advocates, and police, they were able to return home, but their parents say the experience has forever changed their lives.

“24 hours, 7 days, I watch my daughter, see what they do, and I try to be the best mother,” one mother said. “I don’t want no mothers to feel this pain.”

Police say one young man, still a juvenile in the eyes of the law, was responsible for luring these three girls from home. They say since prosecuting these cases presents challenges, they are hopeful parents will listen to message given by these girls and their families.

“Watch your teenagers and the ages they are concerned is 11-14…watch what they do, through their phone, through the internet.”

The National Center For Missing and Exploited Children ( https://www.missingkids.org/HOME) offers these tips for parents who may discover that their child has gone missing:

  • Immediately call your local law enforcement agency.
  • After you have reported your child missing to law enforcement, call the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 1-800-THE-LOST® (1-800-843-5678).
  • If your child is missing from home, search through: Closets. Piles of laundry. In and under beds. Inside large appliances. Vehicles – including trunks. Anywhere else that a child may crawl or hide.
  • Notify the store manager or security office if your child cannot be found when in a store. Then immediately call your local law enforcement agency. Many stores have a Code Adam plan of action in place.
  • When you call law enforcement Provide law enforcement with your child’s name, date of birth, height, weight, and descriptions of any other unique identifiers such as eyeglasses and braces. Tell them when you noticed your child was missing and what clothing he or she was wearing. Request law enforcement authorities immediately enter your child’s name and identifying information into the FBI’s National Crime Information Center Missing Person File.

Copyright 2022 WBTV. All rights reserved.