Local human trafficking victim speaks out

Local human trafficking victim speaks out

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Myrtle Beach Police detectives say just because it’s the office season, doesn’t mean crimes like human trafficking aren’t happening in our community.

Detective Pete Woods explains traffickers may come to this area because they can get hotel deals during the shoulder season.

“December, January, February is our offseason or the shoulder season,” Woods said. “This is the time of year traffickers do come to Myrtle Beach, they’ll rent three or four hotel rooms and will traffic.”

Human trafficking survivor, Savannah Causey explains there are three types of human trafficking.

“There’s force, that’s when they take you. There’s fraud, that’s when you answer a modeling agency and you get there and it’s human trafficking. And there’s manipulation and that’s what happens a lot in America.”

That’s also what happened to Causey. Her journey started in a state psychiatric unit in Pennsylvania.

“I met the girl that brings other girls to him. So when I was in there she said that he could provide me with money while I was in there,” Causey said.

Causey got out of the psychiatric unit first and went to a group home. Her friend got out shortly after, that’s when she was introduced to a man who Causey was told would help her.

“We just started hanging out and he started buying me things and one day he told me I owed him something,” Causey said. “And I told him I don’t owe you anything and he said, ‘everything I bought for you and everything I paid for you’re going to pay me back.’”

That’s when Causey was human trafficked.

“It’s something you don’t think happens in your town,” Causey said.

Causey got out of human trafficking 7 years ago. Now she works to bring awareness and help victims and survivors.

“I know that if I can get the help I need, then they can get the help they need. I just like to bring hope to people’s life.”

The South Carolina Human Trafficking task force will be holding an awareness event on January 10 at Blane Church in Murrells Inlet from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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