Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

12/30/2016 (3 weeks ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Keith Avila knew something was wrong with the young teen.

California Uber driver Keith Avila is a hero to a young victim of human trafficking.

An Uber driver became a hero to a teenage girl.

An Uber driver became a hero to a teenage girl.

Highlights

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/30/2016 (3 weeks ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Keith Avila, hero, teenage girl, sex trafficking


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - During a routine drive, Avila picked up two women and a teenage girl. The girl sat beside him in the front seat while the women in the back openly spoke of selling the girl at a Holiday Inn in Sacramento.

Shocked, Avila said nothing.


He listened closely to the women, who discussed everything from what the girl should do to the exact hotel and room number they were going to.

As soon as they stepped from his vehicle, Avila called the police.

He went on Facebook to stream a live video to describe what happened as a police car pulls up behind him.

"Man, I just saw some crazy stuff right now," he says into his phone's camera. "I'm doing Uber. I decided to go do Uber right after work and I picked up a group of three girls. And they just started talking right in front of me like if I wasn't listening, I don't know.

"They just started talking right in front of me and I am at the Holiday Inn in south Sacramento. The police is just right there, look at that. And there was a 12-year-old girl just right here. Twelve-year-old girl, little girl.

"And the pimp was back there. I picked them up, I didn't know what was going on at first, I didn't know what was going on. But I started driving them and they started like talking - saying like everything that was going on, like what they were doing was child sex trafficking.

"And I was like -at first, like halfway there I realized it was child sex trafficking. So when I dropped them off, about four minutes later I just drove away, called the police, told them everything that was going on. The police arrived fast, I mean they don't play.

"They do not play. Not when you're doing child sex trafficking. They just came by, picked up the girls, and, luckily, I got the number of the ... room number of where they were gonna go."

Three suspects arrested for child trafficking unlawful sexual acts with a minor.

Three suspects arrested for child trafficking unlawful sexual acts with a minor.


The video continues, with Avila sharing how the female pimps "were describing what they were going to do when they get there" and told the girl to "check for guns, get the money before you start touching up on the guy."

He recalled one of the pimps saying, "Okay, here's what you do. Before we get inside, you want to hug the guy. the first thing you ask is, 'Do you have any weapons?' When you're hugging them, pat them down. Check for weapons.'"

The women then tells the girl to ask for her "donation" and get the cash before she walks into the room.

"When I heard that, it was so obvious," Avila told The Daily Beast. "There was no thought process. I'm going to call the police."

Officers responded immediately and Avila admitted: "What gave me chills is, the next day [police] said she was reunited with her family. She was missing. I felt kind of good about that."

He also learned she wasn't twelve, but sixteen-years-old.


Destiny Pettway and Maria Westley were the alleged pimps arrested for child trafficking that night. Disney Vang, the man waiting at the hotel room, was also arrested for unlawful sexual activity with a minor.

Avila's main job is as a photographer specializing in quinceañeras. He explained: "I take pictures of girls exactly her age. When I take pictures, everyone's happy and smiling. To see that, compared to what I saw [that night], I know, 'Okay, there's something wrong here.'"

Christopher Trim, a public informant officer for the Elk Grove Police Department, reported Pettway and Westley remain in custody on $500,000 bonds each. Vang was bailed out of Sacramento County jail.

media id="24267"]
Trim shared: "There is no expectation of privacy in an Uber or cab or Lyft. If people are in a situation where they're freely discussing a criminal activity, I would hope the driver forwards that to law enforcement."

When asked why Avila bothered to get involved, he simply responded: "Honestly, I didn't think about it. They had said what they said and it's one of those things where that's what you do."

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for DECEMBER 2016
Universal:
End to Child-Soldiers: That the scandal of child-soldiers may be eliminated the world over.
Evangelization: Europe: That the peoples of Europe may rediscover the beauty, goodness, and truth of the Gospel which gives joy and hope to life.



Comments


More U.S.

'I could have been arrested...' - Nebraska law forcing nuns to remove habits in schools sparks controversy Watch

Image of Nuns are not allowed to wear habits in Nebraska schools.

By (CNA/EWTN News)

Sister Madeleine Miller's efforts to substitute teach in a Nebraska public school ran afoul of a century-old law that left her bewildered - and prompted the state legislature to take another look at the law's dark past. Lincoln, NE (CNA/EWTN News) - "I was just ... continue reading


Meth cook and devil worshiper attacks mother then leaves her for dead with demon king's name written on her chest Watch

Image of Chase Wall attacked his mother and left her for dead with a demon king's name scrawled across her chest.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Chase Wall, a 33-year-old occult-obsessed meth addict, was arrested after beating his mother, stealing her car and leaving her for dead with a demon's name inscribed on her bloody chest. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Wall's 66-year-old mother was discovered in a ... continue reading


Amazing discovery in Canada reveals one man's controversial claim was TRUE Watch

Image of Evidence of stone tools used on a horse's jaw means humans arrived in North America thousands of years earlier than previously believed.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Researchers at the Université of Montréal (UdeM) in Canada made an important discovery this year, changing a key element of North American history. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - New research suggests humans first traveled to North America 24,000 ... continue reading


When one Bible isn't enough, use two! Trump to take oath with TWO Holy Bibles Watch

Image of Donald Trump will be sworn into office using two Bibles.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Donald Trump will be sworn into office on January 19. At that time, he will have not one but two Bibles - one of which will be pulled from the Library of Congress collection to commemorate the special event. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Donald Trump will be ... continue reading


Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Pro-Life Christian Leader and Hero Watch

Image of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Christian Leader

By Deacon Keith Fournier

On January 27, 2017, the annual March for Life will take place once again in Washington, DC. On January 16th we commemorate a great Christian and Human Rights Leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He was assassinated in 1968 for defending the fundamental truth of ... continue reading


Pope Francis cited in one bishop's call for change - Will it help? Watch

Image of Pope Francis has been calling for help on behalf of immigrants for years.

By Kevin Jones (CNA/EWTN News)

The upcoming inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump has raised questions about the future of immigration reform, but the nation's Catholic bishops remain hopeful. Washington D.C. (CNA/EWTN News) - "We also find it important that we engage the present incoming ... continue reading


'The Greatest Show on Earth' to pack up for the last time after 146 years Watch

Image of The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Baily Circus will close after 146 years (Todd Hesler).

By Nikki Crawford (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Baily Circus announced they would be closing up shop for the final time this May after 146 years of bringing magic to families across the country. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Everyone knows the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & ... continue reading


Christianity on the decline under Obama, pop media, and atheist persecution Watch

Image of A church is burned in full-scale effigy at the Burning Man festival, an expression of pop culture.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Atheism and agnosticism gained a boost during Obama's presidency as the number of people claiming no religious affiliation rose during his administration. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - The Pew Research Center has released a report which states, "When it comes ... continue reading


Catholic hospital under fire for practicing religious freedoms Watch

Image of A Catholic hospital may be forced to compromise its religious rights.

By Kevin J. Jones (CNA/EWTN News)

A Catholic hospital faces an anti-discrimination lawsuit for cancelling a surgery to remove a uterus from a female who identifies as a man. The surgery was meant to treat gender dysphoria. Paterson, NJ (CNA/EWTN News) - "This case involves whether a Catholic hospital ... continue reading


Why does the Catholic University of America have a collection of over 600 Ethiopian magic scrolls? Watch

Image of Hundreds of Ethiopian religious scrolls now reside in Washington D.C.

By Adelaide Mena (CNA/EWTN News)

With a recent gift of more than 600 handmade leather manuscripts, the Catholic University of America is now home to one of the most important collections of Ethiopian religious manuscripts in the United States. Washington D.C. (CNA/EWTN News) - The collection includes ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Hebrews 9:2-3, 11-14
2 There was a tent which comprised two compartments: the first, in which ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9
2 For Yahweh, the Most High, is glorious, the great king over all the ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 3:20-21
20 He went home again, and once more such a crowd collected that they ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for January 21st, 2017 Image

St. Agnes
January 21: St. Agnes of Rome was born in 291 AD and raised ... Read More