On January 24th thru January 26th, 2019 officers of the Merced Police Department DART and GVSU Teams participated in the statewide operation “Reclaim and Rebuild” targeting those involved in Human Trafficking and Prostitution.
The arrested individuals are, Kurtrina King (Age 30), Billy Fountain (Age 30), Tony Fass (Age 49), Lazerah Jones (Age 21), Ciria Campbell (Age 31), Megan Richey (Age 28), Som Sarnag (Age 28), Rayna Gonzales (Age 22), Douglas Black (Age 42), Jesus Munoz (Age 51), Courtney Webb (Age 25), Tara Kolody (Age 32), Vincent Fowler (Age 34), Juan Velasquez (Age 38), Cesar Alvarez (Age 34), Salim Farha (Age 35), Mario Flores (Age 38), Jason Scoggins (Age 42) and (2) 17-year-old juveniles.
The Units conducted undercover operations focused on targeting people who engage in human trafficking and prostitution. The Merced Police Department DART Team with the assistance of the MPD GVSU responded to and posted online advertisements on known commercial sex websites.
When contacted through the numbers posted online, officers negotiated sex acts for money and arrested the subjects when they arrived to engage in acts of prostitution.
Officers arrested (20) twenty people during the operation. Ten (10) men were arrested for solicitation of prostitution, eight (8) women were arrested for solicitation of prostitution, and two men were arrested for pimping and supervision of prostitution with one of the men also charged with Human Trafficking of a minor under the age of 18.
Billy Fountain was arrested on charges of pimping and supervision of a prostitute. A 17-year-old male juvenile was arrested on charges of Human Trafficking of a minor under the age of 18 and pimping.
Officers were able to locate the rescued juvenile’s grandmother and obtained an emergency protective order. The rescued juvenile was reunited with the grandmother.
Merced Police are asking anyone with any information regarding these cases to contact Sergeant Solis at (209) 385-4703, or the Merced Police Department Tipster Line at (209) 385-4725. The public can send information via anonymous text messages to police department by dialing “TIP411” (847411) and including the word “Comvip” as the “keyword” in the text message.