In a video press conference uploaded to Facebook today, a panel of Shreveport Police Department officers, lead by Lieutenant Janice Dailey, responded to numerous rumors that a human trafficking ring has been operating in the Shreveport-Bossier City area.
A frustrated Dailey began by addressing several reports of human trafficking that have been circulating online. Specifically mentioned were reports that a child was abducted near the Southern Hills area. In addition, there were other stories where people claimed to see suspicious activities, including a nefarious looking “white van”, near schools and in the parking lots of neighborhood shopping centers. According to Lieutenant Dailey, these rumors were thoroughly investigated, and all turned out to be unsubstantiated.
After addressing the allegations, Dailey asked the citizens who have been reporting these activities without evidence to cease spreading these stories via social media. The false reports are most commonly circulated in the form of Facebook posts, that shared to the Police Department’s page. “You are terrorizing your neighbors,” Dailey said. According to SPD, rumors of this nature are nothing new and have been traveling around online since early 2011. “We’re not saying this can’t occur, won’t occur, what we are telling you is that we have no confirmed reports of this.”
Another investigator from the Police Department detailed the facts about the human trafficking reports. She explained that most reports turn out to be “runaways, or teenagers who are engaging in risk taking behavior, such as age inappropriate activities or promiscuity.”
At the conclusion of the video, Lieutenant Dailey and her staff held a Q&A with the people who were watching live via Facebook. The Lieutenant was able to give specific details about other reports, which were investigated and turned out to be false.
The department’s investigators are not taking the matter lightly, however, and they ask that anyone who has been the victim of human trafficking contact them at 318-673-7022.
You can watch the video here: