LANCASTER, Pa. — Editor's Note: The above video is from March 1.
The Lancaster County District Attorney's Office announced its Human Trafficking Task Force made its first arrest, charging a Delaware County man with promoting prostitution, living off prostitutes and other offenses relating to the exploitation of an 18-year-old woman at Lancaster hotel.
32-year-old Louis Fountain, of Brookhaven, is also charged with two counts of trafficking in individuals for his alleged actions, according to the DA's office.
Authorities say their investigation began March 1, when detectives found an internet ad listing a woman who was performing sex acts for money in Lancaster.
Detectives began a text exchange with the number provided in the advertisement and agreed to pay $260 to spend an hour with the woman at a hotel in Lancaster.
An undercover detective met the woman in a room at the hotel, provided her with the money and discussed the sex acts that would take place.
An arrest team then entered the room, investigators said.
In an interview with police, the woman said she met Fountain online and began a relationship with him, according to investigators. Fountain allegedly told her she could make money by having sex with other men.
The victim stated she was making more than $1,000 a day but provided all the money to Fountain.
Police seized $1,765 in the hotel room with the victim, investigators said.
The woman told police Fountain took her to other hotels in Lancaster, Harrisburg and Delaware. Police were able to corroborate these statements through additional hotel documents, cross referencing the internet advertisements and video footage, according to investigators.
Documents seized from various hotel rooms in Lancaster, Harrisburg and Delaware indicated that Fountain spent thousands of dollars on hotel rooms from the end of 2021 to the present.
The Lancaster County Human Trafficking Task Force continued to monitor Fountain and he was arrested on April 21, when he checked into a second Lancaster City hotel with the victim, the DA's office said.
Fountain allegedly told investigators he met the victim on a dating site and was trying to help the victim be a model.
“Human trafficking is occurring right here in Lancaster County," District attorney Heather Adams said. "It is a profitable crime and can occur in any hotel in Lancaster County. Every hotel is vulnerable.
“I want to thank both hotels involved in this case for their vigilance and for their full and complete cooperation with law enforcement and I would urge the public to also remain vigilant because awareness and vigilance will go a long way toward helping law enforcement fight this plague.”
Fountain is presumed innocent.
East Lampeter Township and Lancaster County Human Trafficking Task Force Detective Chris Jones filed charges, which were approved by Assistant District Attorney Karen Mansfield.