A man and woman ran a sex-trafficking operation out of a West Dallas home for nearly three years, federal authorities say, giving victims drugs as a means of controlling them and beating them savagely to mete out punishment.
Desmond Kintwana Bethany (Kaufman County Sheriff's Office)
Several victims spoke to authorities after nervy escapes, including a woman who jumped into an ice cream truck and begged the driver not to reveal her location.
Desmond Kintwana Bethany, 40, and Bailey Jane Hance, 21, each face one count of conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking through force, fraud or coercion. They were arrested Monday night in Dallas County.
Authorities began investigating in 2017 after a 22-year-old woman said Bethany had trafficked her for sex from November 2016 through November 2017.
Bailey Jane Hance (Dallas County Sheriff's Department)
According to the criminal complaint against Bethany and Hance, the woman met Bethany through Facebook and soon went to live with him, Hance and several other women at a house in the 3700 block of Morris Street. He used fear and violence to make them perform sex acts for money, she said.
The woman told authorities that she and the other women were not allowed to leave the 672-square-foot home. Bethany installed cameras and placed locks on the doors and windows, and would often sleep in the living room with a gun, according to the complaint. Bethany, a street gang member and convicted felon, is prohibited from possessing a firearm.
According to the complaint, Bethany beat the women in front of one another with his fists as well as items including boxing gloves, switches and clothes hangers to punish them for not making enough money or disrespecting him. He also regularly raped the 22-year-old and the other women, she said.
The woman said that Hance was Bethany's "bottom girl" and had gotten a crown tattoo to signify that she belonged to him.
Although she left the home in November, the woman was lured back to Bethany's house in March by another woman, according to the complaint. She was able to escape in April after surreptitiously contacting her brother to set up what Bethany thought was a date with a customer. Her brother met her at a condominium and helped her get away.
A second victim told authorities that she met Bethany through a friend in November and that he and Hance drove to Kansas to bring her to Dallas.
She said she saw Bethany beat women at the home — including Hance — a number of times and that Hance would also assault the women at his direction, the complaint says. The pair gave the woman drugs including cocaine, ecstasy and heroin to control them and coerce them into prostituting themselves, she said.
The Kansas woman eventually got free after contacting her father, who called Dallas police.
A 24-year-old woman who also spoke to authorities said she was held by the pair starting in June 2015.
She said that at one point, Bethany and Hance blindfolded the women and drove them to Florida, where they immediately posted ads on Backpage.com to find customers. She said that she and the other women were forced to perform multiple sex acts daily, without ever getting a day off.
Bethany had a number of guns, according to the complaint, including a matching pair of pink pistols, and destroyed his victims' IDs so authorities would have trouble identifying them.
The 24-year-old told authorities that she decided to escape after an instance where Bethany choked her with the cord of a curling iron, beat her with items including a studded belt, waterboarded her and then raped her, the complaint says.
Several days later, she was taking out the trash and ran away, she said. She hopped into a passing ice cream truck and begged the driver to go to the police.
A post from Desmond Bethany's Facebook account shows a large amount of cash, as well as a woman's hand with a crown on one fingernail. (via Facebook)
Bethany came out of the house looking for her and walked up to the truck. He demanded to know where the woman had gone and pointed a gun at the driver, the complaint says, but the driver sped off and flagged down a police officer.
Authorities say Bethany and Hance often drove the victims to their customers in an Audi and a Jaguar.
Posts on a Facebook page that appears to belong to Bethany show large amounts of cash, jewelry, designer clothes and a Jaguar. A post from May 23 — the same day the criminal complaint was filed — says "I give thanks to God everyday because I've learned that each day is a blessing #DaRealMVP."
Bethany and Hance both were charged in 2016 with felony pandering and conspiracy in Oklahoma. Those cases are pending.
Bethany had charges of compelling prostitution and aggravated sexual assault of a child dismissed after police reported he'd recruited a 16-year-old from Euless and transported her between Texas and Louisiana cities for more than 40 prostitution dates in 2012.
He's previously pleaded guilty to four counts of assault, as well as evading arrest, burglary of a vehicle and marijuana possession.
Bethany was being held Thursday at the Kaufman County Jail. Hance was in federal custody.