Scranton, Pa

Little Rock Man Gets Life Sentence for Sex Trafficking of a 6-Year-Old

Posted: November 8, 2022

On October 25, 2022, United States District Judge Brian S. Miller sentenced DeMarcus George to life in prison for conspiracy to commit human trafficking of a minor in 2018. Last year on November 15, 2021, George entered a guilty plea alongside his co-defendant Mario Waters. Waters is currently awaiting sentencing.

According to the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Arkansas, in February 2018, a six-year-old child was taken to Arkansas Children’s Hospital. The child presented with symptoms of what was later determined to be several sexually transmitted infections. An FBI forensic investigator interviewed the child, who disclosed that two men had raped her in a hotel room. The child proceeded to describe the hotel room, stating it had a curtain in the middle of the room and a picture hanging on the wall. Based on these descriptions, investigators and law enforcement were able to locate a hotel in Little Rock, Arkansas. The hotel provided financial records to investigators, which revealed that the child’s mother had rented a room there in March 2018. The child has since been removed from her mother’s custody.

During further investigations, blood and urine samples obtained by search warrants later revealed that George and Waters tested positive for the same sexually transmitted infections that the child had contracted. Doctors at Arkansas Children’s Hospital determined that it was unlikely that the child obtained the infections from the same offender, instead suggesting there were likely multiple sexual offenders. Both George and Waters admitted they were involved in trafficking the child with others.

In 2000, the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (TVPA) was passed, and it has been reauthorized four times. Under the TVPA, the term “severe forms of trafficking in persons” means sex trafficking in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained 18 years of age. The removal of “force, fraud, or coercion” when the victim is under the age of 18 makes it clear that under federal law a child cannot legally consent to sex. As a minor cannot legally consent to sex, “any child involved in a commercial sex act and is under the age of 18 is by definition a victim.” The child in this case is a victim of sexual assault and rape, and as aptly stated by acting United States Attorney Jonathan D. Ross before George and Waters’ sentencing, “[t]he unspeakable crimes committed against this child remind us how vitally important it is to have law enforcement officers willing to investigate and put a stop to these horrific actions . . . Our law enforcement partners work hard every day to protect children from this abuse, and our office will continue to aggressively pursue those who commit these deplorable crimes.”

The CSE Institute commends the work of Assistant United States Attorneys Kristen Bryant and Allison Bragg for prosecuting this case. In addition, the CSE Institute applauds the investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Little Rock Police Department. We also commend Judge Miller for determining an appropriate sentence and providing much-needed justice to the victim. We especially commend the survivor and her courageousness in coming forward and telling her story. After all, it is irrefutable that survivor voices will be the force of change in the sex trafficking narrative.

All views expressed herein are personal to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law or of Villanova University. 

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