ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - An alert Orange County deputy is credited with rescuing a young girl from a life of prostitution in central Florida.
Investigators said that Lamar Postlewaite force the girl into prostitution.
Investigators said the girl was from Atlanta and was convinced by another woman to fly to Miami where she was told she could make more money than she did at her job at Walmart.
According to investigators, the girl was eventually introduced to Postlewaite and brought to Orlando.
Investigators said the girl told them she stayed at a Days Inn on International Drive and was forced into prostitution against her will.
"If they're out on the street, and have nowhere to go, how they can quickly become victims of people like this," said Carol Wick of Harbor House, a shelter for domestic violence and human trafficking victims.
She was eventually spotted by a patrol deputy at an Orange Blossom Trail McDonald's, investigators said.
According to investigators, the deputy became suspicious as he watched the girl step out of a car with two men.
"Every single time somebody is rescued it's the most wonderful feeling in the world," said Wick.
Wick said Harbor House takes in about 10 human trafficking victims each year. She said that in recent months the number of cases has been on the rise. Wick attributed the rise in cases she sees to increased awareness of the crime.
"I think there's a more coordinated effort. I think there's more attention being paid to it, a lot more time and effort being put into it," said Wick.