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Knox County Sheriff News

Prostitution Sting Uncovers 16 Year Old Runaway

Friday, 13 October 2017

The Vice Unit of the Knox County Sheriff’s Office conducted three days of undercover prostitution stings this week and in the process discovered a 16 year old girl who was a runaway from North Carolina.  She had been missing for 2 months from Asheville and had been traveling with two women and one man.    Two of the women, 20 year old Tabitha Bans from Asheville and 20 year old Jesse McMinn of Hickory, North Carolina were charged with prostitution.  The man, 27 year old Timothy King from Hickory, was charged with 2 counts of trafficking for sexual servitude, which is a felony.  With the discovery of the 16 year old, the FBI was called in to assist in the investigation, which is on-going.   During the investigation, an undercover detective made an appointment with Banks and McMinn at the Holiday Inn Knoxville West.  After they were arrested, detectives learned that King was waiting on the girls in his vehicle. Detectives located the car with the 16 year old inside.  The 16 year old is a juvenile; therefore no more information will be available.

Also arrested in the sting was 20 year old Kyra Fultz from Hickory who was charged with prostitution and simple possession.  Rian O’Quinn, 25 from Knoxville was charged with prostitution and simple possession. Kayla Inmate, 25 from Rockwood, was charged with prostitution.  Anthony Vaughan from Acworth, Georgia was charged with criminal impersonation and will be extradited to Georgia for being a fugitive from justice on a violation of probation.  Two others were arrested on prostitution charges: Samantha Stransky, 28, of Knoxville and 29 year old Amanda Kosis from Detroit, Michigan.  She is wanted on a vehicular homicide charge in Detroit.

The undercover operation focused on advertisements placed on Backpage.com promising sexual favors in exchange for money.  Undercover detectives called the numbers in the advertisements and set up appointments to meet the girls at area hotels.

The KCSO would especially like to thank the management and ownership of the Holiday Inn West who assisted law enforcement in the stings. They have proven to be committed to the cause of the elimination of human trafficking.

The KCSO’s Vice Unit periodically conducts these operations in an effort to identify those who exploit children through commercial sex acts.  Those who are determined to be victims are referred to the appropriate social services.

 

 


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