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"Minnesota woman held two years as slave, Louisiana authorities say"

on Wednesday, 11 June 2014. Posted in Front Page Headline, Media Updates

Authorities say a transgender woman from Minnesota was held as a slave in rural Louisiana for two years.

The woman escaped captivity in Ajax and was picked up last week by a Robeline assistant town marshal at an Interstate 49 exit in Natchitoches.

The woman came to Louisiana from Minnesota after meeting her captors online, according to authorities. The victim, in her early 50s, is in protective custody.

Natchitoches Parish sheriff's office Detective Tim Key told the Pioneer Press he hasn't seen anything like the case before.

Authorities are not releasing the woman's name, Key said. He and Gregg Dunn, chief investigator for the sheriff, declined to disclose where she lived in Minnesota.

According to the sheriff's office, the investigation began when the victim was spotted by a town marshal on I-49 and Highway 6 West near Natchitoches the night of May 3. A logging chain attached to a bucket was around her neck. She had been able to free herself from her captors' residence and had driven one of their vehicles to the interstate.

"Just real frantic and a lot of fast talk," Assistant Police Chief Shelby Borders said of the encounter. "And it was just kind of hard to believe at first."

Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Victor Jones Jr. said David Rodriguez Jr., 37, one of three people arrested in the case, tattooed the woman and registered her as a slave on a website that bills itself as only registering people for consensual submissive or slave relationships.

"In this particular case, the victim probably had some depression, going through the sex change, being disowned by her family," said Carey Etheredge, criminal investigator and forensic examiner with the Natchitoches Parish sheriff's office, when speaking to the Town Talk newspaper of Alexiandria, La.

"Suspects prey on people in this situation. They know how to talk to them, what to say to them to make them feel comfortable and make them think they're coming to live a different life." ...


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