The United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania announced that, on June 5, 2018, Oscar Carter III, 34, and Shelby Summer Brown, 27, both of 1254 N. Cheyenne Avenue, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74106, were indicted on charges relating to sex trafficking of a minor by a federal grand jury. The indictment came nearly two months after Carter and Brown were arrested by Butler County Police for allegedly running a prostitution ring out of a local hotel.
The Department of Justice’s press release reveals that Carter and Brown were indicted on charges of Interstate Transportation of a Minor for Purpose of Engaging in Unlawful Sexual Activity, Conspiracy to Commit Sex Trafficking, and Sex Trafficking of a Child. Both are facing a maximum total sentence of life imprisonment, a fine of $750,000, and a term of supervised release for any term of years not less than five, and up to life.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Carter and Brown allegedly recruited a 17 year-old female from Akron, Ohio and drove her to a hotel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for commercial sex acts. For nearly two weeks in March, the minor was controlled by Carter and Brown. After being identified by the FBI as a possible victim, the minor herself led law enforcement to her traffickers.
This case is part of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s enhanced Project Safe Childhood initiative, a nationwide effort to combat child abuse and sexual exploitation. The U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section lead this project to identify and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet and to identify and rescue child victims.
The CSE Institute applauds the efforts of U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section in combating the evil and pervasive problem that is child sex trafficking. The CSE Institute is also encouraged by the collaborative approach used by multiple law enforcement agencies to investigate this case, implementing the expertise of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Cranberry Township Police, and the City of Pittsburg Bureau of Police. Finally, we commend the brave survivor for her actions; she has truly shown incredible strength and courage.
Assistant United States Attorney Jessica Lieber Smolar will be prosecuting the case. We will continue to provide updates as more details arise.
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 Villanova University.