But Won’t Go To Prison
Published June 13, 2008
A 34-year-old mother of three was convicted yesterday of prostitution for her part in forcing her 16-year-old daughter to have sex for cash and drugs.
The former Annapolis resident, who served two months at the Jennifer Road Detention Center and another two on house arrest at her boyfriend’s place in Lanham, was sentenced to time served and placed on probation for the next five years as part of a plea agreement.
Circuit Court Judge William C. Mulford II said if the woman, who no longer has custody of her daughters, violates her probation she could face another 4 1/2 years in prison.
“To say what you have done in this case is reprehensible is an understatement,” Judge Mulford said.
The mother, who The Capital is not naming to protect the identity of her daughter, entered anyesterday to one count of prostitution for setting her daughter up with a man and handling the money. An Alford plea allows a defendant to maintain her innocence while admitting prosecutors have enough evidence to convict her. It carries all the consequences of a guilty plea.
Assistant State’s Attorney Frank J. Ragione said the state offered the plea to save the woman’s teenage daughter from a trial. He said the daughter now lives in Texas and has moved on with her life. He said the daughter did not want to testify and asked the state to not pursue additional jail time.
“She was more than happy to resolve the issue in this matter,” he said, adding that she is doing well in Texas. “She’d certainly like to leave this behind her.”
State sentencing guidelines recommended the mother serve up to two years in prison.
Judge Mulford praised the mother’s decision to take the plea agreement.
“After what you did, I think it’s the least you can do,” he said.
The mother, a short heavy-set white woman with short brown hair, did not admit any guilt or apologize for what she did to her daughter during the hearing. After the hearing, she ignored questions from reporters.
The mother no longer has custody of her two other children, prosecutors said. She told the court she already is taking parenting classes in hopes of regaining custody of the kids.
The mother was charged Feb. 5 with sex abuse of a minor, sexual solicitation of a minor and several counts of prostitution.
Police, however, began investigating the woman in June 2007 after her daughter came to police and told them what was happening.
“My mom came to me when I was broke and said, ‘I know how you can make some money,'” she told police, according to reports.
Police said the woman didn’t physically force the teenager into having sex, but she told her the family needed the money for food and convinced her it was a good way to make money.
Police said the woman arranged for her daughter to sleep with two different men repeatedly over four months. According to charging documents, one client paid the girl $150 and the mother $50 for setting it up. The other client only paid the mother, and only with crack cocaine, which police said she then would sell.
“Each time he gave my mom crack and I got nothing,” the girl said in charging documents.
The teen said she had never prostituted herself before her mom approached her.
“My mom did it before, but not me,” she said, according to police reports. “My mom told me it was a way to make money. I knew it was wrong. Somehow she talked me into it.”
“The former Annapolis resident, who served two months at the Jennifer Road Detention Center and another two on house arrest at her boyfriend’s place in Lanham, was sentenced to time served and placed on probation for the next five years as part of a plea agreement.”
Probation, instead of prison.
Wonder what kind of sentence she would have received if she was a black woman?