On Friday, Aug. 19, the Delaware State Police, along with the U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations division and the Ocean City Police Department, concluded an eight-month investigation into a human trafficking ring allegedly operating in Sussex County with the arrest of two area men.
According to police, beginning in December 2015, investigators obtained information that Rashawn B. Davis, 24, of Millsboro was allegedly running a prostitution ring out of numerous motels. Troopers then launched an investigation into the activities and known associates of Davis. Over the course of several months, police said, people connected with Davis were contacted several times at local motel rooms in eastern Sussex County.
In April, police said, the Delaware State Police and agents from the Homeland Security Investigations, with the help of the Ocean City (Md.) Police Department, led an investigation into Davis’ activities. During that month investigators discovered Davis had recruited George L. Dunn, 24, of Georgetown and allegedly showed him how to operate another prostitution ring.
According to the DSP, over the course of the investigation, detectives were able to identify more than eight women who were allegedly current or former victims of Davis and Dunn. The investigation also revealed that Davis and Dunn were allegedly business associates who operated jointly and independently.
Through interviews, detectives said, they learned that Davis had allegedly been operating prostitution rings out of local motels since the fall of 2015. Dunn and Davis allegedly used coercion, verbal abuse and the withholding of heroin to control the behavior of the victims.
Police said Dunn and Davis allegedly posted advertisements utilizing the website http://www.backpage.com; Dunn and Davis allegedly negotiated with potential clients and set all prices; and all proceeds from prostitution activities went back to Dunn and Davis.
According to police, the female victims involved were only provided with minimal amounts of heroin, and basic items, such as fast food and clothing.
As the result of the investigation, Davis was also charged with an unrelated home invasion that occurred on Jan. 4 on Carriage Lane in Rehoboth Beach.
During this incident, police said, two masked suspects armed with a handgun had allegedly forced their way into a residence and forcibly removed items from a 42-year-old man.
On Friday, Aug. 12, Dunn turned himself in to troopers and was charged with: three counts of Human Trafficking—Sexual Servitude and Conspiracy 2nd degree. Dunn was committed to the Sussex Correctional Institute in default of $10,000 secured bond.
On Thursday, Aug. 18, Davis was arrested without incident and charged with: two counts of Human Trafficking—Sexual Servitude; two counts of Conspiracy 2nd Degree; Robbery 1st Degree; Home Invasion and Wearing a Disguise during the Commission of a Felony.
Davis was committed to the Sussex Correctional Institute in default of $147,000 secured bond. (Additional human trafficking charges against Davis are to be added by indictment, police noted.)
Victims or any other person with information regarding the activities of Dunn or Davis are being asked to contact Detective J. Rowley at (302) 752-3801 or the Troop 4 Major Crimes Unit at (302) 856-5850. Information may also be provided by calling Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333, via the internet at www.delaware.crimestoppersweb.com, or by sending an anonymous tip by text to 274637 (CRIMES) using the keyword “DSP.”