MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Murfreesboro woman who was part of a human trafficking case managed to escape her captors Thanksgiving Day.
Now police are wondering could there be more victims.
For nearly 20 years, Candy Carter has dedicated her life to helping victims of human trafficking.
“So often, you know, fear keeps them from leaving,” said Carter. “So, you know, we like to tell them when they come away from it, you’re a hero. It does a lot to the human body, just what their mind and physical body goes through when they have been a victim to these kind of crimes.”
It was no surprise to hear just last week a woman escaped her perpetrators by jumping out of a bathroom window in Murfreesboro and running to the Thornton’s on Old Fort Boulevard where she called her mother and then police.
Carter said it’s sometimes difficult for victims to get the courage to move on.
“I have seen individuals be able to you know, cope very well, but then there are some, it’s a life-long situation for them,” Carter said. “You know, they have triggers that pop up, you know, certain smells, certain sounds.”
The 29-year old victim told police she had been sold, traded and swapped for money and drugs in the Bradyville and Readyville areas of Rutherford County, as well as Grundy County, and in Kentucky.
According to a police report, the victim said she was given the drug ketamine, which induces a trance-like state, to make her sleep at night. Her captors also forced her to use cocaine during the day, she reported.
“Over the years human trafficking has increased,” Carter said. “You know, as far as when population grows in any city crime rate is going to go up, but I will say the state of Tennessee has done very well in cracking down on these crimes.”
One of the two men who held the victim against her will told her he was part of a cartel.
“Human trafficking is modern day slavery in every sense,” Carter said.
Murfreesboro police detectives are investigating and working to determine if there are other victims.
If you are a victim of human trafficking or know someone who may be, call 1-800-TBI-FIND. Victims can also text HELP to BE FREE (233733).