A California teen who had been shot after which dumped along the side of the freeway might have been the victim of human trafficking.
Your body of Tioni Theus, 16, was found dumped with an Interstate 110 on-ramp in South La on Jan. 8. She’d been shot two times within the neck, based on the La County Coroner’s Office.
In a press conference on Wednesday, La County Da George Gascón stated there’s evidence the slain teen “might have been the victim of human trafficking,” NBC La reports.
Gascón mentioned that court public records demonstrate that Theus had being best known as a commercial sexual exploitation of kids (CSEC) victim.
“Children cannot accept to sex work,” stated Tiffany Blacknell, La County Da Office special advisor, stated in the presser. “[Tioni] would be a child. Her existence mattered.”
Theus continues to be referred to as an exciting straight-Students who enjoyed both dance and golf, but relatives also have stated that her existence altered after her mother was permanently disabled inside a severe vehicle accident in 2019. (Her mother remains inside a rehabilitation facility because of her injuries.) Family stated the teenager started rebelling following the accident and would disappear for stretches of your time, based on La NBC affiliate KNBC.
Her cousin Nafeesah Kincy told the LA. Occasions that Tioni was trafficked by a mature man she met on Instagram. (U.S. government officials say that lots of youthful victims of human trafficking “are frequently preyed on by traffickers and lured with false promises of affection, money or perhaps better existence,” additionally up to the more generally known threats and functions of violence, restraint, isolation and financial abuse.)
“We’re certainly not pretending that Tioni was an angel. She faced trauma,” Kincy stated. “I wish to humanize her. I do not want her to appear like a prostitute or perhaps a runaway or somebody who people seem like, ‘Oh, well, they live that lifestyle.'”
Another cousin, Senia Theus, does not yet believe Tioni was trafficked, she told the Occasions.
“I am not will make it and say my baby was perfect, although not horrible either,” she stated. “She was removed too early.”
“Yes, 16-year-olds have issues,” another cousin Lakesia Barrett stated in a vigil for Tioni, according to KNBC. “What 16-year-old didn’t?
“Dumped around the freeway immaterial,” the teenager’s father Darien Jackson told local outlet KCAL. “That just broke me lower. It hurt me, it’s like… who might be so cold like this?”
An additional $50,000 reward in the condition for information was approved Wednesday by Gov. Gavin Newsom. The entire reward has become as much as $115,000 for information associated with the capture of Theus’ killer or killers the majority of the remainder of that’s in the L.A. City Council and also the county.
County Supervisor Carol Mitchell has formerly told Archiweekend.com inside a statement that “Tioni only agreed to be beginning her existence, with the options in front of her, ripped away immediately. It’s heart-wrenching to consider that somebody who’d a lot promise and also the world at her ft might be taken in this cruel manner.”
Anybody with a lot more details are advised to make contact with the California Highway Patrol at 323-644-9557.
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