An investigation that began after concerned managers at a Super 8 Motel in Cambria notified the police of suspicious activity occurring on the property has culminated into a 13 to 26-year prison sentence for a convicted human trafficker. Authorities claimed that Barshay Dunbar ran a commercial sex ring out of the hotel, where he used the internet to advertise his visibly drugged victims to potential sex buyers. Barshay was found guilty of 10 charges that included human trafficking, promoting prostitution, and drug sales on October 25, 2017.
The successful prosecution and sentencing of this trafficker may not have been possible without the initial foresight of the Super 8 motel managers who made the important call to police. Unfortunately, trafficking is often ignored or even encouraged by similarly situated employees. Hospitality workers are in a unique position that allows them to potentially spot and stop trafficking in one of the places where it happens the most, hotels. Dunbar no longer being on the street where he can amass more victims is proof that the vigilance of hospitality workers is immensely important in the fight against trafficking.
The CSE Institute would also like thank the officers assigned to the case, Cambria County Victim Services, and The Cambria County District Attorney’s Office for their work contributing to Dunbar’s conviction and related incarceration. Most importantly, we admire the bravery of the victims whose testimony was pivotal to the outcome of this case.
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.