A Texas sheriff says an alleged attempt by a schoolteacher to sell a young’ girl’s virginity was ‘dastardly’ and ‘trafficking at its worst’.
According to local news reports, Amber Michelle Parker, a 37-year-old teacher of 8th grade English, was arrested on Wednesday.
Police say she had just returned from Morocco after a meeting to ‘finalise’ the deal.
“Family members got wind that Parker was going to try to lure this girl to Morocco,” said McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara. “It is a dastardly story, and it is trafficking at its worst.”
Court documents state the Fairfield woman had posted pictures of her young female relative on social media to lure potential bidders. These revealed the young girl dressed in lingerie and exposing her breasts. It is alleged Parker had been attempting to mark-up the price of the deal by touting the girl’s virginity.
The Waco Tribune reports local police had been monitoring Parker’s activities for several months after being alerted to her activities. They were tipped-off by family members suspicious of Parker’s intentions towards her young relative.
Parker’s exact relationship with the girl has not been revealed, however, in an effort to protect her identity.
“She was online talking to multiple guys in Morocco trying to get it set up where she could take her with her over there to them,” KWTX reports Freestone County Sheriff Jeremy Shipley as saying.
Investigators say Parker had taken the photos of the young girl, “telling her the positions to be in, what to expose, and how to take the photographs to keep the male interested in her.”
The court affidavit says Parker used social media to tell one of the men: “She (the victim) wants to peel your uniform off of you, cuff you, and lick your abs.”
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“Parker begins to discuss with the two men flying to the United States to visit, and engage in sexual intercourse with both her and the victim,” the affidavit adds. “During the conversation, the males are trying to have both Parker and the victim travel to Casablanca, Morocco to engage in sexual acts, after Parker indicates to the men that the victim is a virgin, and provides her age.”
She was arrested shortly after returning from her trip to Morocco, and is reportedly refusing to co-operate with investigators
Investigators specialising in human-sex trafficking had been assigned to the case, and granted a search warrant to seize Parker’s electronic devices.
“After a joint investigation between Freestone County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Investigator Preston Cordova and McLennan County Sheriff’s Office Detective Joseph Scaramucci, a female suspect was placed under arrest for the offence of Trafficking of Persons after conspiring to traffic a minor child to multiple male subjects online in Morocco,” Freestone County Sheriff Shipley said in a statement.
Parker’s hometown of Fairfield has a population of about 3000, some 135km north of Dallas and 65km east of Waco. She has been placed on administrative leave from the nearby Mexia Junior High.
The Star Telegram reports Parker has been assigned $US250,000 bail. The felony charge of trafficking an underage relative has a minimum sentence of 25 years in jail, with a maximum of life.
“It’s a very low-down thing, it’s the worst of the worst when you prostitute your own relative, that’s as low as you get,” Sheriff McNamara said. “It’s sickening to think a woman would stoop that low.”