Since July, 2014, 14 Bronx girls between the ages of 12 and 19 have gone missing, with six being reported missing this month alone. The trend is starting to raise the alarm as local officials are now beginning to fear that a sex trafficking syndicate is targeting the community's young women.
“Every other week our young girls are just vanishing off our streets,” New York City Councilman Andy King said at a press conference on Wednesday. “Something is going on."
King expressed his belief that the "disturbing" pattern, which primarily targets Black or Latina women, could result and the women being forced into prostitution. "Understanding and learning more that there is a valid active prostitution ring that is occurring up here in the Bronx, we need to find ways to shut it down," he said.
King, and several others then went on to read the names of the women who have vanished, and held signs with their photos and information regarding their disappearance on it.
14-year-old Sierra Rivera was last seen on June 2nd when she went missing, police say it was believed she'd run off with her boyfriend. 16-year-old Ashley Bissal was last seen when she was was supposed to pick up her younger sister from school, but she never showed. 15-year-old Emily Arroyo, was supposed to return home from a juvenile program on April 26nd, but she too disappeared.
Hopefully this most recent plea for awareness will raise the city's attention and no more young women are taken from their homes. Our prayers are with those who have gone missing to found.
(Photo: New York Daily News)