Alert: Raina Bennett remains missing, and now there is a disturbing update in the 12-year-old girl's case. Now there are fears that the missing child could be a victim of sex trafficking -- a phenomenon that is growing in the United States and other developed countries with frightening speed. Gather News covered the young girl's story yesterday when it was first shared by an Ohio news source. Since then, her family has been in contact with various media source -- including a voice mail left on the "Case to Case" contact line.
This entire ordeal reportedly began when Raina and her mother Laura Bennett got into an argument and the rebellious 12-year-old stormed out of the home. She was without a phone or shoes and left on foot. This was the day before New Year's Eve. While this seems to be nothing more than a case of a runaway preteen, the danger she is in is very clear. A phone call she made to a friend was traced to the Travelodge Motel on Edgewater Drive, and the clerk at the establishment had disturbing news.
"She said she'd come to the desk Monday morning very disoriented, not knowing where she was, not knowing what time it was. She had to question where she was. Was it day or night? In the company of an older black male," said Laura Bennett. "Are they drugging her? Are they forcing her to do terrible things with other people of a sexual nature? Is she even in the state anymore? Is she dead somewhere? I just want her home."
It does seem that Laura Bennett has reason to be fearful. If the clerk at the Travelodge Motel was being truthful and had actually seen Raina Bennett, then what she saw was something undoubtedly wrong. Even if the missing 12-year-old isn't a victim of sex trafficking, she may very well be in the control of an adult predator.
Crime analyst, profiler & future criminologist Chelsea Hoffman can be found on Huffington Post or Chelsea Hoffman: Case to Case. You can follow her on Twitter @TheRealChelseaH or contact her via her personal blog. Fan the Facebook page for updates on missing persons cases, issues in civil rights and details on Chelsea's fiction works.