Clayton woman charged with trafficking teens for sex

A Jonesboro woman is in jail for allegedly prostituting minors, authorities said.

GBI agents arrested Jessica M. Washington on Wednesday and accused her of prostituting a pair of teens from her apartment onUpper Riverdale Road.

She has been charged with prostitution, keeping a place of prostitution, trafficking persons for labor or servitude, pandering and enticing minors for indecent purposes, according to Clayton County court records.

Members of the GBI’s Child Exploitation and Computer Crimes unit learned of Washington, 27, when they came into contact with one of the teen runaways being harbored at the apartment, unit leader Special Agent Sandra Putnam told Channel 2 Action News.

“She actually just ran away and was picked by Clayton County (police) for being a runaway,” Putnam said. “Once she was placed in a secure facility and was interviewed by her caseworker … the caseworker learned she was a potential victim of this type of crime and notified the GBI.”

The teens were allowed to come and go as they pleased, but were forced to have sex with Washington’s customers – men who responded to online ads on Craig’s List and – to earn food, shelter and clothing.

“A lot of these victims don’t feel like they have any other avenue to go in these types of situations,” Putnam said. “We have reason to believe there are other (victims).”

GBI spokesman John Bankhead said a SWAT team from the Georgia State Patrol entered Washington’s home first because of speculation that she might be armed.

She wasn’t there, but agents were waiting when she returned to arrest her.

She was taken to the Clayton County jail, where she remained Thursday afternoon.