Gary man accused of forcing women into prostitution
By Teresa Auch Schultz email@example.com August 17, 2012 5:54PM
Updated: September 19, 2012 6:10AM
A Gary man is being investigated by the FBI for forcing women across state lines for prostitution and keeping them against their will.
According to a probable cause affidavit unsealed Friday in the U.S. District Court in Hammond, the FBI first learned about Montell Williams, who is also called in the affidavit as Levi, in February after the Gary Police Department received a call about a woman being held against her will at 2200 Marshall St.
The affidavit was filed in July in connection with a request for a search warrant for several email addresses connected to Williams. He has not been charged with anything, according to court records.
When police responded, they discovered Williams along with Sherika Haire and two other adults, identified only as Adult Victim No. 1 and No. 2. Victim No. 2 had a black eye and matched the descriptions of the woman being held against her will.
Although she at first told police she didn’t need help, she later asked them when she was away from the other residents for help in leaving the house and that Williams had forced her to prostitute.
Victim No. 1 told police during a later interview about how she met Williams through an Internet dating site in 2010. Later that year in October, he told her he was a pimp and asked her to work for him. Victim No. 1 told police she felt she had to work for him and moved in with him in Calumet Park, Ill., She would go to several motels in Calumet Park to work, according to the affidavit.
Around that same time, William also recruited Haire to work for him, and he would drive them to an area called “The Track” in Chicago to prostitute, collecting all of the money they made.
Williams advertised both women online as escorts and created several email addresses for them to contact clients. He also created a toll-free number and would record calls to the number on his computer.
According to the affidavit, Williams beat Victim No. 1 and Haire several times from October 2010 to September 2011. One time he was angry they didn’t bring back enough money from prostituting and at another time, he beat Victim No. 1 for leaving without telling him. At that time, he beat her with a power cord, dropped a dumbbell on her and poured cleaning liquid in her eyes, according to the affidavit.
She had to go to The Methodist Hospitals Northlake campus in Gary for her two broken ribs, an open head wound and bruises to her head and torso, which the hospital has confirmed.
In another incident, he threw Victim No. 1 against a wall so hard she left a hole in it, the affidavit says.
Williams and the victim then moved to Gary in April 2011, and he continued to drive her and Haire to Illinois for prostitution. He finally recruited Victim No. 2 in January by placing an advertisement for an escort for his business, Diamond Dollz Entertainment.
Williams admitted to the FBI he owned Diamond Dollz, and investigation uncovered several ads on a website advertising the services of the women and listing several email addresses. The warrant request, which was granted, asked to view the contents of those email addresses.
The affidavit said that Williams and Victim No. 2 were both taken into custody when they were originally discovered in February but that both were released. It does not say what happened to Victim No. 1 or Haire.