Baltimore Man Pleads Guilty to Sex Trafficking of a Minor
BALTIMORE—Kenneth Ronald Robinson, age 52, of Baltimore, pleaded guilty today to sex trafficking involving a 14-year-old girl. Co-defendants Cheralyn Crawford, a/k/a “Rachel,” age 25, of Baltimore; Jeffrey Clark, age 43, of Nottingham, Maryland; and Craig Judy, age 29, of Baltimore, pleaded guilty on May 22, May 21, and May 19, 2014, respectively, to using the Internet to promote a minor to engage in prostitution.
The guilty pleas were announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Stephen E. Vogt of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Chief James W. Johnson of the Baltimore County Police Department; Colonel Marcus L. Brown, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police; and Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger.
According to the guilty pleas, on the evening of Monday June 17, 2013, members of the Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force recovered a 14-year-old female from a motel on Joppa Road in Baltimore. The victim was located after law enforcement viewed a picture of her on a known Internet website that advertises for prostitution, and called the number on the advertisement. Undercover officers made a “date” for prostitution with victim, who led them to her location.
Following her recovery and during subsequent interviews of victim, it was learned that, at Robinson’s direction, the victim had been staying with Crawford and Judy and had been performing commercial sex acts from that hotel for approximately four days. At Robinson’s request, Crawford took photographs of the minor victim in sexually explicit poses, and, using Clark’s cell phone, she and Judy posted those photos in advertisements on an Internet website to advertise the victim’s prostitution services. Judy admitted that he reloaded pre-paid Green Dot cards used to pay for advertisements for prostitution on the Internet website with the commercial sex earnings of the minor victim and co-defendant Crawford, who was also a prostitute. A subsequent search of Clark’s cell phone revealed that it contained photos of both the minor victim, and Crawford used on the Internet website’s commercial sex advertisements. At Robinson’s direction, Clark transported the minor victim to motels, stores and restaurants in the Towson, Maryland area. One of the motel rooms used by the victim, Crawford, and Judy was registered to Clark. Phone records show that Robinson’s cell phone was in contact with the victim’s phone 45 times between June 12 and June 19, 2013; and with Clark’s phone 18 times between June 15 and June 19, 2013.
Robinson faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison and up to life in prison for sex trafficking. U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett has scheduled sentencing for Robinson on September 11, 2014, at 3:30 p.m.
Crawford, Clark, and Judy each face a maximum sentence of five years in prison. Judge Bennett scheduled sentencing for Crawford and Clark on August 14, 2014, at 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., respectively; and for Judy on August 21, 2014, at 3:00 p.m. Robinson, Clark, and Judy remain detained. Crawford is released under the supervision of U.S. Pretrial Services.
The case was investigated by the FBI-led Maryland Child Exploitation Task Force (MCETF), created in 2010 to combat child prostitution, with members from10 state and federal law enforcement agencies. The task force coordinates with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the Maryland State Police Child Recovery Unit to identify missing children being advertised online for prostitution.
MCETF partners with the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, formed in 2007 to discover and rescue victims of human trafficking while identifying and prosecuting offenders. Members include federal, state, and local law enforcement, as well as victim service providers and local community members. For more information about the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, please visit http://www.justice.gov/usao/md/priorities_human.html.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the FBI, Baltimore County Police Department, Maryland State Police, and the Baltimore County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant United States Attorneys Ayn B. Ducao, P. Michael Cunningham, and Rachel M. Yasser, who are prosecuting the case.