The lawsuit claims that Scores knowingly hired a developmentally challenged 17-year old girl.
A teenage girl is suing Scores, a national strip chain, for sex trafficking.
According to ABC News, the lawsuit was filed by a pseudonymous “Jane Doe.” In 2017, Doe says a male acquaintance brought to a Scores outlet in Tampa, Florida. Within 30 minutes, the complaint states, Doe was on stage.
Eventually, Doe claims, she was abused, exploited and prostituted.
However, Doe’s allegations aren’t limited to trafficking. The suit says that, while Doe was hired at age seventeen, her developmental age was closer to thirteen. But that didn’t stop her “friend,” Roberto Torres, from setting her up as a stripper.
Torres, writes the New York Post, met Doe at a drug rehabilitation clinic. After both checked out, Torres invited her to live with him. At Torres’s home, Doe was reportedly prepared for prostitution by different family members, including Roberto’s father.
The father, notes the Post, would give her cash, complimenting her looks and telling her that she had a “nice body.”
Eventually, Torres tried to put Doe to work, taking her to strip clubs across Tampa.
“The first couple of clubs they go to just basically throw her out the door,” said attorney Michael Dolce of Cohen Milsten Sellers & Toll. But when they got to Scores, Doe was practically hired on the spot.
The New York Post says that whatever vetting Scores did of Doe and her identity was minimal. A “house mom” in charge of the dancers looked at Doe’s fake I.D., then approved her application. But the woman whose driver’s license Doe used wasn’t even of the same ethnicity or skin color.
“They don’t know who she was, she just showed up,” Dolce said. “She was just brought into town.”
While the lawsuit seeks damages from Scores Tampa, Doe’s attorneys say the practices which allowed their client to be exploited are consistent with the chain’s business model.
Doe’s family agrees, too. In a statement, her mother told the New York Post that Scores took advantage of her mentally disabled daughter.
“The Scores business model is directly to blame for the exploitation of my teenage daughter and has caused an already struggling girl an infinitely greater amount of suffering,” she said. “Scores puts its bottom line ahead of the well-being of young women, enabling and then callously profiting from human trafficking and sexual abuse. Our hope is that holding Scores accountable for the pain its negligence has caused my daughter will protect others from such horrific trauma.”
Dolce noted that, rife with abuse as some sectors of the industry may be, Scores’ supposed crimes are particularly cruel.
“Enabling and profiting from the sexual abuse of a developmentally disabled teenage girl is deplorable even by the standards of the adult entertainment industry,” Dolce said.
The lawsuit is seeking undisclosed damages from Scores; the club’s corporate headquarters refused the chance to comment, per the Post.