Human trafficking suspect targeted minors, runaways, BCSO says

Eric Taylor, 24, already faced charge of sexually assaulting minor

By Jessie Degollado - Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - Eric Taylor, 24, who is accused of forcing at least 10 young girls — including runaways — into prostitution and working at strip clubs, already faced a charge of sexually assaulting a minor in September.

Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar said that at the time, Taylor and a 16-year-old girl were found in a vehicle outside the MGM Cabaret in Von Ormy during a sting operation.

Salazar said the all-nude, after-hours, unlicensed club was shut down the next day.

“We suspected there was illegal sexual activity and human trafficking,” Salazar said during a news conference following Taylor’s latest arrest.

He said the victim in the initial case played a pivotal role in the investigation that followed.

The sheriff credited the BCSO Special Victims Unit for building a rapport with the young girl, despite her going back to Taylor after he’d posted bond after his arrest in September.  

“Making her feel safe, making her feel comfortable” is what Salazar said led to the victim opening up about what Taylor is now accused of doing.

Salazar said investigators learned that not only had Taylor allegedly victimized her, “He was inducing her to recruit other young females into the same business, the same horrible fate.”

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission also assisted in the investigation, BCSO Detective Marquita Hunt said, because some of the young women working at the strip clubs across the state were underage girls.

The sheriff said he urges anyone with information about Taylor or any establishment engaging in similar activity to call BCSO at 210-335-6000. He also said that since San Antonio is considered a national hub for human trafficking activity, parents should be aware of the risks and monitor their children’s social media accounts.

Salazar said when a child runs away, “Within 48 hours, we know that child is going to be approached by a human trafficker.”

"You need to report it (a runaway) as soon as it happens, every instance, even if they come back. You need to make sure you’re reporting it," he said.

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