Two Ohio men have been indicted on charges of attempting to kidnapping and traffic a 22-year-old woman earlier this month, according to the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office.
On April 3, Sean Simpkins, 39, entered a public transit station located on West 98th St. in Cleveland at about 3 p.m. He approached the victim and allegedly began to assault her.
Simpkins then dragged the victim to a car parked nearby where his accomplice, David McCord, 43, was waiting in the driver’s seat.
A struggle ensued inside the vehicle and the victim managed to escape from the car. McCord and Simpkins fled the scene and a good Samaritan who saw the incident called police, according to Michael C. O’Malley, the county prosecutor.
Officers from the Cleveland Division of Police responded to the scene and were able to apprehend McCord while he was still inside the car. Simpkins, who fled on foot to a nearby coffee shop, was arrested shortly after.
Both Simpkins and McCord were indicted on April 14 on several counts of kidnapping, assault, abduction, trafficking persons, attempting compelling prostitution, having weapons under disability and receiving stolen property.
"There are indications at this point that, yes, there was an element of human trafficking going on. That was one of the purposes to get this woman in the vehicle with them," Cuyahoga County Assistant Prosecutor Megan Helton told local news media.
The county prosecutor’s office is asking anyone who may have additional information regarding incidents that may have involved Simpkins or McCord, to contact the Human Trafficking Task Force at 216-443-6085.