A Macomb Township, Michigan, couple is accused of holding a woman with special needs captive and forcing her to sell sex.
The Detroit Free Press reported that Michael Welch, 38, and Misty George, 30, allegedly kept the 29-year-old woman—who has physical and mental disabilities—in an outside shed, took her support money, and created online ads to sell her for sex.
“Instead of helping this profoundly special-needs person, [they] took her support money, forced her to live rough in an outside shed, and sold her as a prostitute. As your heart breaks for this vulnerable woman, your conscience is shocked by the abusive cruelty one human being is capable of showing to another,” prosecutor Eric Smith said in court Tuesday.
Several men allegedly responded to the illicit ads and gave the couple money for sexual services with the victim, according to WJBK.
It is unclear how George and Welch came into contact with the victim. The victim supposedly once lived in the home but was moved to the shed after she was unable to produce the rent the couple demanded. From there, she wasn’t allowed in the home to use the restroom or shower, the station reported.
Police got involved after the woman left the mobile home park and her family discovered what transpired. Smith told the Free Press that the abuse lasted for months.
“The Sheriff and the Prosecutor’s Office are resolved to bring some measure of justice to this young woman, and to get her the support and treatment she needs.”
Welch is charged with human trafficking and accepting prostitution earnings. George is facing the same charges in addition to using a computer to commit a crime.
However, Welch is expected to be hit with new charges for allegedly escaping from a police transport vehicle following arraignment.
George is being held on a $75,000 bond while Welch was given a bond of $50,000.
The couple is scheduled to reappear in court on October 24.
[Featured Image: Macomb County Sheriff’s Office]