A Baltimore special-education teacher is on administrative leave after authorities charged him with trafficking a 16-year-old girl in Baltimore County.
Baltimore County police said Monday that Michael Brandon Osikomaiya, 23, of Baltimore was arrested last week.
Osikomaiya works at NACA Freedom and Democracy II, a public charter school on East Northern Parkway, city school officials said. He was placed on administrative leave Friday, when the school system was informed of the criminal charges.
Police said the 16-year-old girl was advertising prostitution online, and an undercover detective contacted her Thursday afternoon to meet at the Towson East Motel.
As an FBI victim specialist was taking the girl — a runaway from Baltimore — to be interviewed, she got out of the car and ran, said Cpl. John Wachter, a spokesman for the county Police Department. Officers have not found her.
The girl is not one of Osikomaiya's students, police said. She is considered a victim and does not face charges, they added.
According to charging documents filed Friday in Baltimore County District Court in Towson, the girl told police she had known Osikomaiya for about four or five years because he went to high school with her relatives. About two months ago, she began dating him, she told police.
The documents state the girl told police that Osikomaiya was with her when she began posting ads on Backpage.com a few weeks ago. She said she set up appointments with customers via text message using his phone. She said that Osikomaiya "did not condone what she was doing but he wanted to keep her safe since he couldn't stop her."
When she met with a customer, Osikomaiya would sit in the parking lot with his vehicle facing the room, she said, according to the documents.
Osikomaiya told investigators that he believed the girl was 17, the charging documents state. He said he allowed her to use his phone to set up appointments and post ads because she didn't have aphone.
"Osikomaiya stated that he knew what he did was wrong but he just didn't want [the girl] being left alone and getting hurt," police wrote in the charging documents.
Osikomaiya is charged with multiple counts of human trafficking and prostitution, and is being held at the county detention center on $200,000 bail. No attorney was listed for him in court records.
Baltimore City schools officials said employees must clear a background check before beginning employment but would not say whether Osikomaiya did.
He does not have a criminal record in Maryland, according to online court records.