A West Side man and woman face federal charges of forcing two teenage runaways — including a 13-year-old girl — to work for them as prostitutes, federal prosecutors said.
Arnell Chase Misher, 30; and Braundii Young, 22, both of the 100 block of North Lockwood Avenue, are each charged with conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of minors, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney's office.
Misher allegedly approached a 17-year-old girl after she ran away from home in June 2012 and told her she could make money by working for him performing sex acts with strangers, the statement said.
Misher and Young purchased clothing for the girl, styled her hair and posted provocative photos online advertising her for sex services, the complaint alleges. Misher also told the teen to lie about her age and name if she was ever arrested.
The girl worked for the pair for two weeks, during which she engaged in multiple sexual acts for money and turned the proceeds over to them, the statement said.
A second girl, 13 at the time, was approached by Misher multiple times after running away from home in July 2012, and he asked her to work for him performing sex acts, the statement said.
After the girl repeatedly turned him down, he grabbed her, threw her into his car and forced her to take pills before taking her to the West Side and forcing her to work for him, the complaint alleges.
Later that month, on her 14th birthday, the girl ran away from home again, the statement said. Misher threatened to beat her up, took her to his home and locked her in the basement, where he told her "she needed to contribute," the statement said.
If convicted, Misher and Young face up to life in prison.
Young is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court on Wednesday, and Misher is next scheduled to appear on March 10.