Learn How This Mother of Three Narrowly Avoided Human Trafficking

Adult holding childs wrist. Bihar, India.

Learn How This Mother of Three Narrowly Avoided Human Trafficking

And she shares information about how to spot it happening.

Published March 30th

As young Black women continue to disappear both in Washington, D.C., and across the country, a mother of three from California shared a harrowing story about narrowly avoiding likely human traffickers. In sharing what happened, Diandra Toyos provides clues about signs to watch for — and how to get oneself out of a terrifying situation. Toyos was at IKEA with her mother and children when she got a "gut feeling" that something was wrong. 

"After a few minutes, I noticed a well-dressed, middle-aged man circling the area, getting closer to me and the kids. At one point he came right up to me and the boys and instinctively I put myself between he and my mobile son," Toyos wrote. "My son wandered into one of the little display rooms across from the couches and I followed him closely with my baby strapped to me. My mom said she watched as the older man dropped what he was doing and quickly and closely followed us into the area. At the same time, she noticed another man dressed more casually and in his 20s. He wasn’t looking at us, but was walking the same circling pattern around us as the first man."

Eventually, Toyos and her family managed to "lose" the potential human traffickers and alerted an IKEA employee. She noted that the maze-like layout of IKEA would enable such predators to more easily extract children from situations. 

Check out Toyos's original post below and inform yourself on signs of potential human trafficking and possible ways to avoid them. 

Written by Lainey Sidell

(Photo: James Morgan/Getty Images)

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