Cherokee County

Kidnapped 13-year-old rescued from sex trafficking during traffic stop in Cherokee County

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. — Canton police say a 16-year-old is under arrest and a 13-year-old is back with her family following a traffic stop.

The department posted on Facebook an officer conducted a traffic stop Wednesday morning after noticing a driver on their cell phone.

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The teen girl driving could not provide a driver’s license or identification, according to investigators. A vehicle registration check revealed the Dodge Caravan was reported stolen out of North Carolina.

The officer searched the van, finding a large amount of lingerie, according to police.


Detectives arrived and determined a 13-year-old girl who was with the 16-year-old was a victim of human trafficking and kidnapping. Investigators determined the 16-year-old was transporting the 13-year-old to another state.

The driver is facing several charges including trafficking of persons for labor or sexual servitude, kidnapping, giving false name, address, or date of birth, theft by receiving stolen property, unlawful use of wireless device, possession of a controlled substance.

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“I would like to express my gratitude for the exceptional work of our Officers and Detectives in this case. By taking a routine traffic stop and conducting an exceptional investigation, members of the Canton Police Department forever changed a young girl’s life for the better,” said Chief Stephen Merrifield in the Facebook post.

The victim was reunited with her family.