By Calvin Palmer
A 15-year-old girl sold her seven-year-old stepsister for sex at a party in a high-rise apartment block in Trenton, New Jersey, on Sunday night.
The teen had sold herself for sex with party guests and then handed money to her younger sister and watched as many as seven men and boys gang-raped the child.
The elder girl has been arrested and charged with aggravated sexual assault, criminal restraint, terroristic threats, endangering the welfare of a child, and promoting prostitution. Her identity has not been released by Trenton police.
Capt Joseph Juniak said: “You don’t even know what to say. It’s incomprehensible.”
All those involved in the gang rape will face identical charges, Juniak said, and even those who were in the room but did not harm the girl will be charged.
“Those individuals who did not take part in the physical attack are also going to be held responsible for endangering that child,” he said.
The people who engaged in sex with the 15-year-old will also be charged for having sex with an underage girl.
Police were also trying to determine if any of the culprits were associated with a street gang or drug dealing
After the attack the young girl put her clothes back on and left the Rowan Towers apartment while her sister stayed behind. Two women found the child crying outside the apartment block and walked her home.
Police are trying to track down the participants in the sexual assault and rape.
“These individuals need to be identified and brought to justice as soon as possible,” Juniak said.
An outraged Mayor Douglas Palmer could scarcely find words to express his horror.
“As the father of a young daughter, this is one of the most abhorrent, perverted, immoral acts I’ve ever heard of,” he said. “It’s abhorrent. The police are gonna track down these people and get justice for this innocent angel.”
“I believe personally — not as the mayor — personally, there is a space reserved in hell for the perpetrators of this act and I know they’ll get there,” he said.
Police said the girls were outside in the neighborhood on Sunday afternoon when the 15-year-old ran into two young men she knew who invited her to a party at the apartment. Rather than leave the seven-year-old behind, the teen took her along.
At the party, the 15-year-old starting having sex with several of the men for money and then gave the younger girl some cash to let a group of men touch her. Juniak would not say how much money was exchanged.
The girls’ parents reported them missing late on Sunday afternoon. Police had just arrived at the home when the seven-year-old returned and told her parents what happened, Juniak said.
The child was treated at a hospital, and police said child protective services are working with the family to get her psychological help.
The apartment building where the assault took place is well-known to police, who are hired by the building to handle security at night from 5pm to 3am.
Many of the apartments are vacant. The renter of the 13-floor apartment where the party was held had not been home for quite a while, and investigators were trying to find out how the partygoers got in.
Juniak indicated that the 15-year-old previously had contact with child services, but he declined to elaborate or discuss the family’s makeup, except to say the girls “considered themselves sisters”.