19-year-old woman charged in teen human trafficking case

- Prosecutors say this is one of those cases that illustrate how Houston has become a major hub for human trafficking. Most people believe victims of human trafficking are from other countries, but this human trafficking victim is a 14-year-old girl from the Houston area.

"Police were investigating a runaway,” said Harris County assistant district attorney Joanne Musick. That teen was turned into a sex slave by 19-year-old Denise Coronado, according to prosecutors. Coronado did not appear before a judge on Friday during her probable cause hearing due to a medical problem, but the judge continued the hearing without her present.

During the hearing, evidence was presented that 14-year-old girl told law enforcement officers that she was walking down a street when she was pulled into a van. The girl said she was then driven to a wooded area where she was kept against her will for five days. She was then taken to a Houston motel where she was introduced to Coronado.

A prosecutor told the judge that Coronado and another male co-defendant forced the teen girl into prostituting herself for money. Coronado threatened the girl, burned her with a cigarette, and forced her to engage in prostitution. Coronado took photographs of the girl and published them on the Backpage.com website.

During a one-week period in March, the girl was forced to have sex with more than twenty men. She was later able to escape.

"The 14-year-old runaway was taken from the streets by another person and then delivered to a home where Coronado was," said Musick. "Coronado took photographs posted on Backpage and then had sex dates set up where men would come and negotiate sex. They would pay Coronado and have sex with the child.”

The Houston Police Department vice division's Human Trafficking Unit is continuing its investigation into the case and are making an effort to find Coronado’s accomplice. Officers are trying to determine if any other children were forced into prostitution by Coronado.

Coronado was charged on Friday with compelling prostitution and if she is convicted, the felony carries a penalty of up to 20 years in state prison. She is scheduled to appear in 176th District Court on Monday to be arraigned.

For anyone with concerns regarding about human trafficking, please consult the following resources provided by the  Houston Area Council on Human Trafficking:

Prevention Services

1. CHILDREN AT RISK

2900 Weslayan, Suite 400

Houston, TX 77027

(713) 869-7740

Website: childrenatrisk.org/content/

info@childrenatrisk.org

2. CITY OF HOUSTON, CITY COUNCIL
3. CRIME STOPPERS OF HOUSTON

3001 Main Street

Houston, TX 77002

(713) 222-TIPS

Website: www.crime-stoppers.org/

info@crime-stoppers.org

4. HOUSTON INTERFAITH WORKER JUSTICE (FE Y JUSTICIA WORKER CENTER)

1805 W. Alabama St.

Houston, TX 77098

(713) 862-8222

Website: www.houstonworkers.org/

fjwc@houstonworkers.org

5. LOVE 146

P.O. Box 66253

Houston, TX 77266

(979) 476-2512

Website: love146.org/

6. UNITED AGAINST HUMAN TRAFFICKING

P.O. Box 541184

Houston, TX 77254

(713) 874-0290

Website: www.houstonrr.org/

Protection Services

8. CATHOLIC CHARITIES – CABRINI CENTER

2900 Louisiana Street

Houston, TX 77006

(713) 874-6570

Website: www.catholiccharities.org/cabrinicenter

9. CATHOLIC CHARITIES – UNACCOMPANIED MINOR PROGRAM (DUCS)

2900 Louisiana Street

Houston, TX 77006

(202) 420-9720

Website: www.catholiccharities.org/stmichaelshomeforchildren

10. CITY OF HOUSTON, HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

8000 North Stadium Drive

Houston, TX 77054

(832) 393-5169

Website: www.houstontx.gov/health/HHS-Home-Page

11. COVENANT HOUSE TEXAS

1111 Lovett Blvd

Houston, TX 77006

(713) 523-2231 ext. 5623

Website: www.covenanthousetx.org/

cgarrard@covenanthouse.org

12. HARRIS COUNTY HEALTH SYSTEM
13. HARRIS COUNTY JUVENILE MENTAL HEALTH COURT
14. HARRIS COUNTY PROTECTIVE SERVICES FOR CHILDREN & ADULTS

2525 Murworth

Houston, TX 77054

(713) 295-2548

Website: www.hc-ps.org/

15. LEGACY COMMUNITY HEALTH SERVICES

1415 California St.

Houston, TX 77006

(832) 548-5125

Website: www.legacycommunityhealth.org/

info@legacycommunityhealth.org

16. TAHIRIH JUSTICE CENTER

1717 St. James Place, Suite 450

Houston, TX 77056

(713) 481-1793

Website: www.tahirih.org/

17. WE’VE BEEN THERE DONE THAT

1200 Baker Street

Houston, TX 77002

(832) 877-8933

Website: wevebeentheredonethat.org/

18. YMCA OF GREATER HOUSTON, INTERNATIONAL SERVICES: TRAFFICKING PERSONS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (TPAP)

6300 Westpark, Suite 600

Houston, TX 77057

(713) 339-9015

Website: www.ymcahouston.org/ymca-international/

 Prosecution Services

18. FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATIONS

1 Justice Park Drive

Houston, TX 77092

(713) 936-8758

Website: www.fbi.gov/houston

Houston.Texas@ic.fbi.gov

19. HARRIS COUNTY ATTORNEY’S OFFICE

1019 Congress, 15th Floor

Houston, TX 77002

(713) 274-5137

Website: www.harriscountycao.org

debbie.dillard@cao.hctx.net

20. HARRIS COUNTY CONSTABLE’S OFFICE, PRECINCT 6

333 Lockwood Dr.

Houston, TX 77011

(713) 923-9156

Website: www.harriscountytx.gov/conpct6/

21. HARRIS COUNTY CONSTABLE’S OFFICE, PRECINCT 7

5290 Griggs Road

Houston, TX 77021

(713) 643-6773

Website: www.harriscountytx.gov/conpct7/

Anna.Carriere@cn7.hctx.net

22. HARRIS COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY’S OFFICE

1201 Franklin Street, Suite 600

Houston, TX 77002

(713) 755-5546

Website: app.dao.hctx.net/

da@dao.hctx.net

23. HARRIS COUNTY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE COORDINATING COUNCIL

3015 Richmond Ave., Suite 120-I

Houston, TX 77098

(281) 400-3680

Website: hcdvcc.org/2014/

info@hcdvcc.org

24. HARRIS COUNTY PUBLIC DEFENDERS OFFICE

1201 Franklin St., 13th Floor

Houston, TX 77002

(512) 426-2663

Website: harriscountypublicdefender.org/

25. HARRIS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
26. HARRIS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE, HTRA
27. HOMELAND SECURITY INVESTIGATIONS

4141 N. Sam Houston Parkway East #300

Houston, TX 77032

(281) 985-0500

Website: www.ice.gov/hsi

28. HOUSTON POLICE DEPARTMENT

1200 Travis St.

Houston, TX 77002

(713) 308-1870

Website: www.houstonpolice.org/

public.affairs@houstonpolice.org

29. HOUSTON POLICE DEPARTMENT, HUMAN TRAFFICKING UNIT
30. U.S. ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS

1000 Louisiana St. Ste. 2300

Houston, TX 77002

(713) 567-9343

Website: www.justice.gov/usao-sdtx

usatxs.atty@usdoj.gov

 

Other resources include the following:

Project Girls Crisis Center
4351 Telephone Road
Houston, TX 77087
832-933-7419

Houston Area Women’s Center
1010 Waugh Drive
Houston, TX 77019
Domestic Violence Hotline: 713-528-2121
Rape Crisis Hotline: 713-528-7273

 

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