OAKLAND — Just three days into his trial, a 40-year-old Bay Area man accepted a 16-year prison term in exchange for pleading no contest to charges that he trafficked a teen girl around the Bay Area.
Darnell Jones, of San Francisco, accepted the plea deal Oct. 20, pleading no contest to criminal threats and human trafficking of a minor. In exchange, prosecutors dropped charges of rape, pimping a minor, and pandering, court records show.
Jones had been in Santa Rita Jail since June 2018, when he was arrested on suspicion of trafficking a 16-year-old girl. The case started one month earlier, after police interviewed the girl at a Contra Costa County child interview center. It was there that she named Jones as her pimp, telling authorities that he took her around Northern California to cities like Oakland, San Francisco and Stockton for the purposes of sex trafficking, according to Oakland police.
Authorities believe Jones began trafficking the girl in April 2018, according to a police probable cause statement filed in court.
The girl told police Jones was also “pimping” two other women, that he went by the nickname “Money,” and that he would supply them with condoms and take the money they made. Investigators were able to independently verify parts of her story, like that Jones was known to drive a shiny, green Cadillac Escalade, according to Oakland police.
The plea deal also requires Jones to register as a sex offender for life, prosecutors said. He has not yet been formally sentenced, but is scheduled to appeal in court in January for that purpose, court records show.
Jones’ attorney did not return a request for comment.
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Author: Nate Gartrell