A South Ozone Park man was recently indicted on charges of imprisoning, prostituting and raping a 15-year-old runaway.
According to the indictment, Michael Summerville, 32, befriended the then 14-year-old girl in January 2010. The two allegedly lived together in Brooklyn where they engaged in sexual activities. Eventually, Summerville began pimping the girl out, prosecutors said.
The girl ran away in October 2010, but she returned to the Brooklyn home to retrieve a cell phone and computer Summerville had taken, prosecutors said. Summerville then allegedly took the girl back to his South Ozone Park home where he continued to have sex with his victim. The girl is alleged to have begun prostituting daily and was forced to give all her earnings to Summerville.
Prosecutors also charged that Summerville gave the girl to another pimp in late October. The new pimp also had sex with her and forced her to engage in prostitution throughout Queens, prosecutors said.
The victim escaped and went to the police, which prompted the investigation.
Using information provided by the victim, undercover officers went to Summerville’s home on December 1. The officers were allegedly met by four females who offered to have sex for money. The police said they paid one girl $360 in pre-recorded buy money and was brought to a back room where they observed Summerville. Prosecutors said the $360 buy money was recovered from Summerville’s pants pockets.
“The defendant’s alleged behavior is despicable and he must be prosecuted for his actions to the fullest extent of the law,” said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.
Summerville was charged with kidnapping, sex trafficking, promoting prostitution, rape, criminal sexual acts and menacing and endangering the welfare of a child. He faces a maximum sentence of 25 years if convicted.
The state legislature strengthened penalties against human trafficking in June 2007. The law created the sex trafficking felony for those who profit from prostitution by engaging in sex trafficking. Convicted felons are required to register as sex offenders and provide social service assistance to the victims.