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Sex trafficking suspect captured in Atlanta

The FBI announced the arrest of Charles William Dexter III, charged in Hennepin County with sex trafficking, soliciting and criminal sexual conduct.
Credit: Hennepin County
Charles William Dexter III

ATLANTA — A man wanted by the FBI for sex trafficking a Twin Cities teen is now in custody, after being arrested in Atlanta. 

Charles William Dexter III is charged with sex trafficking a person under the age of 18, soliciting a person under 18 to commit prostitution and criminal sexual conduct for having sex with a minor between 13 and 16 years old.

The Minneapolis office of the FBI had posted on Twitter alerting people that Dexter was thought to be in Atlanta, along with pictures of him and his tattoos. On Thursday afternoon the office added an update, that the defendant had been taken into custody and would soon be on his way back to Minnesota to face the charges involving an incident from August of 2020.  

A criminal complaint filed in Hennepin County details the allegations, which involved a girl who at that time was 14 years old. Bloomington police had come across an ad placed on an internet site advertising sexual acts for sale in their city. Investigators traced the phone number and found it belonged to a teenaged female they had previous contact with. 

An officer texted the number and made arrangements for a meeting at a Bloomington hotel. When squads arrived at the location they found the room empty but littered with unused condoms. Outside the hotel they found two minors, one of whom was the 14-year-old girl who police traced the phone to. She was crying heavily. 

The teen told investigators that she met the defendant, 40-year-old Charles William Dexter III, at a bus stop a couple of months previously. She said he set up the "date" that day, explained she would have to give him half the money for the sex acts, and coached her how to speak to customers. She also said Dexter had had sex with her just that morning. 

The second teen confirmed that the two were supposed to have sex with a customer, who in actuality was the Bloomington police officer who set up the sting. 

In a subsequent interview at Cornerhouse, a Twin Cities child advocacy center, the 14-year-old described how Dexter first approached her about engaging in prostitution, asked if she wanted to make some money and described it as "working for him." She said she told the defendant she was only 14, and reported that Dexter said it didn't matter. The teen described multiple incidents where she would have sex with strange men for money, and then split the proceeds with Dexter. 

The girl also said in the interview that Dexter had forced her to have sex with him approximately five times, and would strangle her until she passed out. 

Dexter was arrested by Bloomington police but fled the Twin Cities before his case could be adjudicated. 

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