Georgia Man Arrested with 15-Year-Old Miami Girl Suspected of Trafficking

Georgia Man Arrested With 15-Year-Old Miami Girl Suspected of Trafficking

Miami police apprehended a man from suburban Atlanta late Thursday night following a car chase, collision, and foot pursuit.

The man, identified as 39-year-old Sterling Henderson, was accused of bringing a 15-year-old girl from Georgia to South Florida, with suspicions of grooming her for sex trafficking.

According to the Miami Police Department, the teenager suffered severe injuries when Henderson crashed the car in the Edgewater neighborhood. During a police interview, Henderson hinted that he may have sexually assaulted the victim at some point.

The arrest report revealed that detectives from Georgia’s DeKalb County Police Department had informed Miami-Dade Police Department about Henderson enticing the girl to Miami without parental consent, indicating she was likely being groomed for human trafficking.

A Georgia arrest warrant disclosed that the girl had informed her mother via Instagram about being with an older man in Miami and requested money.

Miami-Dade detectives, collaborating with the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office, initiated an investigation. Spotting Henderson’s vehicle downtown, a Miami-Dade detective attempted to pull him over, leading to a chase.

Henderson evaded police, disregarding traffic lights and colliding with light poles on Biscayne Boulevard. The pursuit concluded when he crashed while attempting a left turn onto Northeast 17th Terrace.

Henderson fled the scene on foot, leaving the injured girl behind. She managed to extricate herself from the sunroof and was subsequently hospitalized with a hip injury.

A foot chase ensued, resulting in Henderson’s apprehension in the area of Northeast Second Avenue and 17th Terrace, where officers deployed a Taser.

During questioning, Henderson invoked his Fifth Amendment right when asked about a sexual relationship with the girl.

Henderson faces a range of felony charges, including leaving the scene of a crash causing serious bodily injury, child neglect causing great bodily harm, attempted interference with custody, and fleeing and eluding a police officer.

Additionally, he is charged with misdemeanors such as contributing to the delinquency of a minor and resisting arrest, along with traffic citations for driving without a license and reckless driving.

As of Friday morning, Henderson was in custody at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center.

Regarding Henderson’s apprehension, the State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle’s office released a statement on Friday:

“As we know from spearheading our local efforts to end the scourge of Human Trafficking, having effective law enforcement partnerships is the only way to impact this almost invisible crime. In cases such as this one where we see a 39 year-old man with a 15 year-old minor victim, we commonly find that they may be grooming them for commercial sexual exploitation.

We are proud to have been able to assist the Dekalb County, Georgia law enforcement agencies who sought our help to bring this young girl home before something awful occurred. I’m glad that the Miam-Dade Police Department and my Human Trafficking Task Force were able to intercept Sterling Henderson and save this child before it was too late.”

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With more than two years of expertise in news and analysis, Eileen Stewart is a seasoned reporter. Eileen is a respected voice in this field, well-known for her sharp reporting and insightful analysis. Her writing covers a wide range of subjects, from politics to culture and more.