Defendant Allegedly Transported Juvenile from North Carolina and Used Force and Threats Against Victim to Ensure Her Compliance
Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and Adam S. Lee, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Richmond Field Office, made the announcement.
According to court records, on March 26, 2014, the FBI was alerted that the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office had received a tip that a juvenile female allegedly was engaged in prostitution for a pimp known as “Midas,” later identified as Cooley. In the early morning hours of March 26, law enforcement located the juvenile in a hotel room in Dumfries, Virginia. During a subsequent interview, the juvenile revealed that she had run away from her home in North Carolina and had been recruited initially by a pimp in Charlotte to engage in prostitution. After two weeks of working for the Charlotte pimp, the juvenile allegedly was transported by Cooley to Fredericksburg, Virginia to engage in further prostitution.
According to court records, once Cooley, the juvenile and another adult prostitute arrived in Virginia, Cooley allegedly posted advertisements for the juvenile in the escorts section on Backpage.com. Cooley also is alleged to have used physical force and threats of violence against the juvenile, including hitting her in the face multiple times when the juvenile refused to engage in certain sex acts with a customer. When police first knocked on the Dumfries hotel room where Cooley and the juvenile were staying on March 26, Cooley is alleged to have violently prevented the victim from opening the door and threatened to kill her if she talked to the police.
Cooley faces a maximum penalty of life in prison if convicted.
This case was investigated by the FBI’s Richmond Field Office, with assistance from the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office and the Prince William County Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather L. Hart is prosecuting the case.
Criminal indictments are only charges and not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty.