A New Jersey woman who was allegedly forced into prostitution by a stranger who bailed her out of jail was rescued after she sent a cry for help via Facebook, police said Thursday.
A 30-year-old South Jersey woman told her brother in Florida in a Facebook message that she was being held against her will and forced to work as a prostitute, said Detective Lt. Jaime Barrios. The brother called authorities in South Jersey, who notified Hackensack police.
Hackensack officers then went to an apartment where they believed she was being held. They allegedly found another woman there — the girlfriend of the alleged captor — and illegal drugs, police said.
Police took the girlfriend into custody and called the alleged captor, 29-year-old Trenace McCarroll. McCarroll said the drugs were his and asked the police not to arrest his girlfriend, saying he would surrender, Berrios said.
He then came to police headquarters with the victim, unaware that authorities were looking for her, Barrios said. McCarroll was arrested and faces numerous charges, including criminal restraint, promoting prostitution, drug charges and human trafficking charges.
The woman told police that she was jailed in South Jersey for allegedly stealing a car, Berrios said. Another female inmate said her ex-boyfriend could bail her out of jail, Berrios said. Police said McCarroll bailed her out and told her she needed to pay off the debt by working as prostitute.
The woman told police that she carried out several acts of prostitution throughout Bergen County under threat to her life, Berrios said.
Eventually the woman was able to get a Facebook message to her brother when she was in a Wi-Fi hot spot, Berrios said.
McCarroll has not yet been arraigned. The Bergen County Prosecutor's Office did not return a call for comment.