A Baltimore man was charged Wednesday with the human trafficking of four women in Howard and Prince George's counties following a nearly two-week investigation by Howard County police.
Kamal Germaine Dorchy, 43, faces multiple counts of human trafficking, the police announced. He is being held without bond at the Howard County jail.
This investigation is part of Howard County's ongoing efforts to stop prostitution and human trafficking. There have been almost as many human trafficking cases this year as there were in all of 2016.
The Howard County Police Department investigated 16 human trafficking cases in the past seven months, while 17 cases were investigated in 2016, according to police.
On July 23, officers responded to a reported theft at a Laurel motel in the 9800 block of Washington Boulevard, where they saw signs of prostitution and human trafficking as well as a woman they believed was a victim, police said.
Sherry Llewellyn, a spokeswoman for the Howard police, said Dorchy was not at the motel at that time.
Police later identified Dorchy as a suspect and served a search warrant on another motel room in Prince George's County a few days later. The woman from the Laurel motel and three more women, all between ages 17 and 24, were found inside.
The victims were taken to safe locations and offered support services, including housing, treatment and transportation.
During the investigation, police said they believed Dorchy arranged appointments for the women at motels and forced them to have sex for money. He then took half of the money and used photographs of the women for advertisements on a website, which police said is commonly used for prostitution.
Police said they believed Dorchy assaulted the victims, threatened them with a handgun and supplied them with drugs. In addition to controlling their access to food and sleep — only allowing them to rest for short amounts of time — Dorchy controlled their communication through texts and calls on their cell phones.
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An attorney representing Dorchy was not listed on the Maryland case search website.