MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The leader of a St. Paul sex trafficking operation received a record-breaking prison sentence on Friday.
A Ramsey County judge sentenced Rashad Ramon Ivy to 700 months in prison for his role in recruiting and sex trafficking at least seven different victims in St. Paul. The 58 year sentence breaks the previous record-setting 40 year sentence of Otis Washington.
In February, a jury found Ivy guilty on four counts of engaging in sex trafficking in the second degree, three counts of solicitation to practice prostitution in the second degree and one count of criminal sexual conduct in the second degree, as well as 15 aggravating factors.
According to the complaint, Ivy and his co-defendants, Tarris Traps and Danika Johnson, enticed several women in St. Paul with promises of "making money, getting new cars and living the dream." They told one woman she could earn $1000 a night and buy two Mercedes in two months if she worked with them, the complaint said.
The three defendants would approach women in an SUV, comment on their attractiveness, then recruit them with talk of starring in music videos and movies before bringing the women back to their apartment.
At the apartment, Ivy, Trapps and Johnson would coerce the women into trafficking with enticements and physical violence.
In one case, two of Ivy's victims reported Ivy and Trapps sexually assaulted them after the women went to the apartment with them. While trying to leave the apartment, Johnson once again tried to entice the women with promises of money and cars.
Johnson attempted to recruit the women by telling them she prostituted for Trapps and showing them nice clothing and pictures of herself in a pile of money.
Officers also learned a victim was coerced into trafficking in June 2015 and beaten badly by Ivy. The victim and her 3-year-old child moved in with Ivy, Trapps and Johnson after being contacted by the defendants on Facebook. Ivy listed her as "Monica" and "Jazzmine" on multiple escort sites and set up "dates" for her. The complaint states that Ivy would use the victim's child as a hostage to force her to cooperate.
The victim only escaped the situation when Ivy beat her so severely she required medical attention. Ivy and Trapps brought her to the hospital, telling her to say she was in a car accident and exaggerate her pain levels so she would receive medication. After she reported the abuse to hospital staff, police arrested Ivy.
The complaint names four more victims with similar stories of coercion.
Trapps pleaded guilty in January to one count each of sex trafficking and solicitation to practice prostitution. He was sentenced to 82 months in prison. Johnson pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit the felony of sex trafficking and was sentenced to a year in the workhouse.
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