WHYY will publish a chapter of the story each day of the week. She battled a meth addiction for decades.
A transgender woman, Erica dropped out of high school and ran away from foster care at She has been homeless and involved in prostitution ever since. Many of the women were trafficked and forced into prostitution as children or adults.
Others got into the life to fund their drug addiction, or as a way to support themselves financially when no other option was available. Many of the women involved in prostitution, trafficked or not, have traumatic histories or deep-rooted personal issues. Unlike surrounding states, such as Maryland and Pennsylvania, advocates say Delaware falls behind when collecting key data about sex trafficking Craigslist prostitute Delaware prostitution and providing services to the women.
But now several individuals, organizations and state officials are putting the issue in the spotlight by educating law enforcement, health officials and the general public, and by building programs that help women transition out of the life. Law enforcement also is finally targeting traffickers, as opposed to the women, two years after legislation was passed into law to tackle the issue. For the most part the general public is unaware we have a major issue with human trafficking in Delaware.
But on the other end of the spectrum are women struggling to survive.
They also perform sex acts in cheap motels along those highways and across the state, often while their pimps wait nearby. Women who are trafficked in Asia and brought to the U. These women risk their lives every day, meeting as many clients as possible, often just to survive—to be able to eat, support their drug dependency or to avoid a beating from their pimp.
Richard Bratz of the Delaware State Police said in27 individuals were charged with prostitution and seven were charged with patronizing a prostitute in New Castle County.
He said in Sussex County there were four defendants facing one count of prostitution and one defendant facing two counts of prostitution. In Kent County there were two defendants facing one count of prostitution and there is also one count of prostitution still listed as pending active, with no arrest, Bratz said.
He said most prostitution occurs due to a hardship or drug dependency.
But the police department also has made several arrests at illicit massage businesses over the years, and have more recently targeted trafficking operations. Bratz said the women working at illicit massage businesses, who are Asian immigrants, refuse to discuss any human trafficking issues with investigators.
More than half were under Tammie, who says she had absent parents and only has a 7th grade education, said her husband frequently brought men home for her to provide services to. She said after they broke up she remarried, and she and her new husband regularly got high on meth.
If he wanted more crank I would have to go out and get more crank. She said the hurt she felt from being involved in prostitution was easier to suppress when she was high.
One man tied her up and raped her with tools, which placed her in the hospital for more than two weeks, Tammie said. They had lived with their grandmother because their parents used drugs, she said. Erica, who came out as transgender at 13 or 14, said she never felt her gender identity was embraced.
She said the lack of support led to her dropping out of high school, running away from foster care and becoming homeless at But after a brief stint with the law and a medical issue, she decided to return to Delaware to do her work on the street. Erica is phoneless, and sleeps wherever she can. I had guys that just pay me for my time.
Those are the best ones. Erica laughs as she talks about her experiences getting shot in the leg and being sexually assaulted. Mark Taylor was punched so hard by officer Gregory Lynch Jr. Trump attorney Lin Wood challenges ejection from Delaware court. Share this Facebook Twitter .
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