Man indicted for kidnapping, raping, and forcing teen into prostitution

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Human trafficking is the second-fastest growing crime in the United States.

A man is behind bars, indicted for kidnapping a teen runaway, raping her, and forcing her to work as a prostitute. Melvin Howard Williams, 32, was indicted on felony charges of rape and two counts of trafficking for commercial sex acts. He also was indicted on a misdemeanor count of harboring a runaway.

Police said a 16-year-old girl told them she ran away from home. She said she was then held against her will and forced to prostitute for money until she escaped on October 22.

The victim said she was held at a house in the 1000 block of Breedlove by Melvin Williams.

No one answered our knock on the door at the home where neighbors told FOX13 they noticed something suspicious happening.

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The victim told officers Williams took her cell phone and posted ads online advertising her for sex.

She said when a customer would respond, Williams would pose as her and arrange for his family members to take her to public parks to perform sex acts.

She told police she was also forced to perform sex acts on Williams.

Williams gave police a written statement saying the victim was at his sister's house on Breedlove from October 5 through October 22.

The girl also told investigators that Williams forced her to have sex with him.