A total of 13 individuals, all from Tennessee with the exception of one person from Olive Branch and another from South Carolina, were arrested by Southaven Police as part of the FBI Operation Cross Country X in Mississippi, a prostitution sting done statewide.
The arrests were announced in a joint news release Tuesday. In Mississippi, a total of 28 people were arrested on prostitution-related charges.
Southaven Police said in a release that they have charged nine prostitutes, three pimps or drivers, and one individual was arrested on traffic charges. Two of the prostitutes were booked on possession charges.
The purpose of Operation Cross Country X, according to the FBI, was to recover underage victims of prostitution, while drawing the public's attention to the problem of sex trafficking at home and elsewhere. No underage victims were found in the Southaven sting operation, according to the Southaven Police Department, which said the arrests took place in the evening and early morning hours of Oct. 13-14.
Charged with prostitution were the following: Chandra Sims, 30 of Olive Branch; Terricia Denise Maxon, 19 of Memphis; Vonesha Lashay Scott, 19 of Memphis; Cassie Nicole Rolack, 34 of Memphis; Chelsea Morgan Obrien, 22 of Covington, Tenn., Denise Cotton, 21 of Memphis; Kendra Michelle Jones, 26 of Memphis; Royal Stevenson, 24 of Memphis and Dantonio Hogg, 28 of Columbia, S.C.
In addition to the prostitution charges, Andrew Lee Obrien, 53 of Covington, Tenn., Marcus Franklin, 31 of Memphis and Tarvis Williams, 27 of Memphis, face felony charges of prostitution-promoting.
Stevenson and Jones also are charged with possession of a controlled substance and Deterrius Jones, 24 of Memphis, is charged with driving with a suspended driver's license as part of the operation.
Chelsea Obrien and Andrew Obrien are daughter and father, according to the Southaven Police.
Local agencies in Jackson and Ridgeland, the Madison County Sheriff's Office and state officials with the Attorney General's Office and Department of Corrections assisted the FBI in similar stings elsewhere in the state.
Operation Cross Country X is considered the largest ever in the history of the initiative nationwide, with 55 FBI field offices and 71 state and local task forces taking part in 106 cities across the country.
Bob Bakken is Staff Writer and may be reached at 662-429-6397 ext. 240.