Texas pair allegedly brought girl to city
A man and woman from Texas, suspected of running an escort company, were charged Friday in a five-count indictment that says they brought a 16-year-old Dallas girl to the New Orleans area during the summer to work as a prostitute, beat her and gave her mood-altering drugs to control her behavior.
According to court documents, Taurean Okeith Jackson, 24, who goes by “Marvelous Rich” and “Richard Marvelously,” and Andrea Birdow, 22, recruited the teenager in the Dallas area.
The two then began to drive her around Texas and Louisiana to act as a prostitute, federal prosecutors allege.
In July, Jackson, Birdow and the teen traveled to Metairie so the girl and Birdow could work as prostitutes.
An undercover Jefferson Parish investigator saw an online ad for the girl, apparently advertising her age as 25, and set up a meeting. Authorities arrived at the hotel on July 10 and arrested Birdow and the girl. Jackson was arrested a week later in Dallas, according to court documents.
Prosecutors said Jackson had been running a prostitution ring in the Dallas area since at least March 2012.
His company, Star City Vixens, advertised “upscale adult entertainment” and claimed that its “team members” would have the opportunity to go to major events, including the Super Bowl and the NBA All-Star Game.
In August 2012, Jackson created and hosted a radio show called “Cheap Hoes Gotta Go,” in which he interviewed pimps and prostitutes and discussed “nuances of the pimp-prostitution ‘game,’ ” according to court documents.
The radio show, which appears to have been broadcast online, provided a call-in forum to “let real pimps and hoes speak there (sic) mind,” according to the website where shows are archived.
Jackson and Birdow met the teen in June. A short time later, they recruited her to begin working as a prostitute.
According to court documents, they would force her to turn over all or most of the money she got from customers while working in Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin, Texas, and Baton Rouge.
Jackson allegedly had the girl operate an “in-call” operation, meaning clients would visit her at a hotel room Jackson or Birdow would rent.
At times, the teen and Birdow would work together as prostitutes, while Jackson would handle the scheduling, often answering calls while impersonating a woman, according to court documents.
When not working, the two would give the teen alcohol or mood-altering drugs, including marijuana, to control her behavior or encourage her to keep working, prosecutors allege.
Another way Jackson controlled the girl, according to court documents, was by beating her. At least once he allegedly whipped her across the legs and buttocks with an extension cord.
Jackson also would beat and choke Birdow in front of the girl and would threaten to do the same to the teen if she tried to leave him, according to court documents.
Jackson is accused of obstructing the investigation by asking people, including family members, to delete social-media accounts that would have provided evidence that he trafficked people for prostitution services, to destroy a computer that might have had records related to those actions and to tell a grand jury that he did not know the teen victim and that she was not in Metairie with Birdow.
Jackson’s recent arrests were not the first time authorities have accused him of using minors for prostitution.
According to court documents, he was convicted in Dallas in 2009 of compelling prostitution of an individual under the age of 18 and sexual assault of a child, both state charges.
Because of those previous convictions, Jackson could face life in prison if convicted of the latest charges. Birdow would face a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years and a maximum of life.