AP NEWS

Lincoln man faces 4-count indictment for alleged sex trafficking of a minor he contacted via Snapchat

March 22, 2019

A Lincoln man charged in state court in September for allegedly sex trafficking a 17-year-old girl now faces a four-count indictment on allegations he trafficked her and another, and took sexually explicit photos of a third girl.

Devin L. Ashford is accused of sex trafficking of a minor; production of child pornography; sex trafficking by means of force, threat, fraud or coercion; and interstate travel for prostitution.

In the indictment, Assistant United States Attorney Lesley Woods set out the allegations that date back as far as 2014 and as recently as June 2018.

If convicted, Ashford would face 15 to 30 years on two of the charges, 15 to life and 10 to life on the others.

Lincoln police went to his home on April 9, after a New York woman reported that her adult daughter had called to say she was being trafficked out of a home near 11th and A streets, according to a police report.

Officers knocked on the door and spoke to Ashford and the daughter, who denied anyone was being trafficked.

Just over a month later, police arrested a woman in a prostitution sting, got search warrants for the cellphones she had and found a photo of a 17-year-old girl that had been sent to several men with text messages advertising her, the report said.

Investigators later found the girl, who had been reported missing, and interviewed her.

She told them Ashford contacted her on the social media app Snapchat, then, in an in-person meeting, he told her to “auction” herself and have sex with men for money.

She told police she went on dates and performed sex acts for money, which went to Ashford. Police say messages between the two on Snapchat showed them discussing money and dates.

Police said they also found sexually explicit images of a 17-year-old girl on Ashford’s Facebook account.