Nebraska authorities believe a mother accused of pimping out her 14-year-old daughter also charged men to have sex with her 7-year-old daughter.
The Nebraska State Patrol says the 35-year-old mother allowed at least seven men to have sex with her 14-year-old at least 20 times.
Investigators say at least three men had sex with the 7-year-old.
Three of the men have been arrested. A 41-year-old Shad Chandler of Lincoln has been arrested on a charge of first-degree sexual assault of a child in connection with a child prostitution case out of Buffalo County. Chandler was taken into custody at his home in Lincoln on April 30 and lodged in the Lancaster County Jail. Chandler’s records were sealed by the Court as the investigation into the prostitution case continued. The seal was lifted by the Court late Wednesday, May 10.
Thirty-seven-year-old Donald Grafe was taken into custody without incident on Saturday, May 5, at his home in Columbus. Investigators say Grafe had sex with a 14-year old girl at a truck stop in Lincoln, sometime between March 24 and April 11.
Grafe’s arrest follows the arrest of Alex Rahe, 28, Omaha. Rahe was taken into custody on May 2, and lodged in the Buffalo County Jail on a charge of first-degree sexual assault of a child.
“This is a very disturbing case,” said Colonel David San key, Superintendent of the Nebraska State Patrol. “Our investigators working this case have nearly 30 years of experience and cannot recall a time where children so young were being sold into prostitution.”
The mother is charged with child pornography and with conspiracy to commit sexual assault of a child, and she remains jailed in lieu of $250,000 bond.
The case began when investigators were provided information of a Grisliest personal ad offering female companionship in the Kearney area.
A search warrant was served on April 26, at the Upland home of the 35-year old woman, where investigators recovered computers and other electronic devices.
Three female children living in the woman's home have been placed in protective custody with the State Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
Investigators are working to identify and locate the others. They'll face charges of sexual assault of a child.
1011 is not using her name, to protect the identity of the girls.
State Patrol Officers say they believe the forced prostitution had been going on for an extended period of time, and they're still investigating others they believe may have also been involved.
The organization "I've Got a Name" is working to end sex trafficking in Lincoln and Nebraska. Mike Smith says this case is just the latest example of young girls becoming victims.
Smith told 10/11, "The tragedy that this whole story is, is even to much for us to understand, to understand what those girls went through and what they're experiencing now, the hope for them is there's a life of healing. One message we learned from our event is what happened to these girls doesn't define who they are."
He says in order to help girls like the 14 and 7-year-old an outreach coordinator is needed to work the streets and develop a relationship of trust with the young victims.
"It's going to be someone who's trained, who understands young people, who understands what it's like for young people who are at risk or on the fringe, and it's that person who can walk into that sort of situation and has a set of eyes that's looking for it."
Smith also adds its the communities role to step up and stop this.
"We can either look the other way and act like this isn't Lincoln, Nebraska, this won't happen here, we're too great of a community or we can be proactive and say 'We're not going to let this hit the news in Lincoln, we're going to fight for our young people, we're going to give them a voice.' And that's what I've Got a Name is all about, they're about fighting for this outreach worker who, her focus is to work on the streets who are at risk at this."
For more information on I've Got a Name and to help fund an outreach coordinator for at-risk teens click on the link to the left.