Teen Girl Charged With Kidnapping, Trafficking of 13-Year-Old: Police

Police on Wednesday morning rescued a 13-year-old girl who was kidnapped by another teenager, in what authorities currently believe was a human trafficking situation.

The incident occurred in Canton, Georgia, just after 10:20 a.m. when officers of the Canton Police Department approached a 2014 Dodge Caravan that had been reported stolen. A young woman was seen driving the car while using a cellphone, while a younger girl was also observed, Fox 11 News reported Friday. Once pulled over, the teen driver was unable to provide any license or registration for the vehicle.

Upon searching the car, officers found 13 THC vape cartridges, three vape pens, a THC-laced candy themed after Nerds Rope, and numerous pieces of lingerie. The officers were eventually able to ascertain that the 16-year-old driver was planning to transport the younger girl over state lines, leading them to suspect a human trafficking scenario.

georgia human trafficking arrest
A 16-year-old girl was arrested on Wednesday morning for allegedly attempting to sexually traffick a 13-year-old girl. Above, a representational image of police arresting a teenager. Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

Police were able to reunite the 13-year-old with her family. Meanwhile, her captor was arrested, booked at the Regional Youth Detention Center, and hit with numerous charges, including trafficking of persons for labor or sexual servitude, kidnapping, giving a false name, address, or date of birth, theft by receiving stolen property, unlawful use of a wireless device, and drug possession. As a minor, her name has not been disclosed to the public.

"I would like to express my gratitude for the exceptional work of our Officers and Detectives in this case," Canton Police Chief Stephen Merrifield said in a statement about the arrest. "By taking a routine traffic stop and conducting an exceptional investigation, members of the Canton Police Department forever changed a young girl's life for the better."

Canton is located roughly 40 miles north of Atlanta.

Newsweek reached out to the Canton Police Department for comment.

Four Charged In Another Attempted Sex Trafficking Incident in Georgia

Last December, investigators with the Georgia attorney general's office were able to charge four individuals from Fulton County for allegedly trafficking a 14-year-old girl who had been located and rescued 10 months earlier.

"It was a 14-year-old girl from College Park who, unfortunately, had been missing for about seven weeks when she was rescued," Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr said in a statement.

The four individuals charged were Jody Netter, Raphel Olivia Sewer, Courdale Thayer, and Jahaundria Seabron. All were charged with human trafficking for sexual servitude, which could potentially carry a life sentence.

Netter was additionally charged with rape, child molestation, and cruelty to children, while Thayer was also charged with cruelty to children, false imprisonment, and aggravated assault. Their charges could collectively result in sentences of life plus 40 years.