Man gets 7-year term for promoting prostitution
A second man involved in a case of promotion of prostitution in Rochester has been sentenced to more than seven years in prison.
Eeon Rashawn Williams, 40, was sentenced Monday in Olmsted County District Court to 90 months in prison, with credit for 140 days served.
He and another man, Charles Antonio Webster Sr., 40, were both charged in a case that began two years ago with the arrest of a teenager in Rochester. The 18-year-old from Georgia was arrested in July 2013 after an undercover Rochester police officer made an appointment to meet her at a Rochester hotel room for sex.
Williams was charged in August 2013 with three counts of promoting the prostitution of an individual, two counts of receiving profits from prostitution and one count of soliciting an individual to practice prostitution, all felonies.
He pleaded guilty in September to one of the promotion counts; the remaining charges were dismissed.
Shortly before the officer arrived to meet the Georgia teenager at the hotel room, surveillance officers saw Webster leaving the room where the girl was allegedly conducting prostitution, according to his criminal complaint.
During a search of the hotel room after her arrest, officers recovered diaries that they believed belonged to the teenager. According to the complaint, there were multiple entries about her activities, as well as references to her "pimp," known as "Tone."
She also outlined an incident when Tone beat her for what he considered disrespect.
A few weeks after her July arrest, the girl made arrangements for sex with another undercover officer.
Surveillance officers watched as a pickup driven by Williams stopped a block from the hotel; the teenage girl left the truck and walked the rest of the way to the hotel. According to the complaint, Webster also was in the vehicle.
The two men were arrested at a nearby gas station.
Webster had $1,948 in cash and two hotel room keys; he also acknowledged that he's known as "Tone," investigators said.
Webster's phone was searched and found to contain a large volume of data related to prostitution. Many of the communications involved females seeking his permission to do things such as get something to eat, go outside, do laundry or purchase an item.
Recordings of jail phone calls revealed that Webster demanded two women continue to prostitute themselves to "get me some (expletive) bond money."
Witnesses told investigators that Webster set all the prices for the women and took all the money the women received from the prostitution. One woman told officers she had a quota of $700 per night; if she didn't make that money, Webster beat her.
Williams was described in the criminal complaint against him as Webster's "right hand man" or his "enforcer." A witness in his case said Williams recruited "new girls" for Webster, and "was trying to learn to pimp from Webster."
Webster was sentenced in July to concurrent prison terms of 180 months, 153 months and 90 months.
The women are considered victims in most prostitution or trafficking cases.