Take 5

Harris County Sheriff’s Office Successfully Locates 31 At-Risk Youths in Three-Day Operation

HARRIS COUNTY, TX, August 16, 2023 – Sheriff Ed Gonzalez and the Harris County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) announced the successful completion of a three-day operation focusing on locating and recovering at-risk runaway youths. The operation took place from August 10 to 12, 2023, and involved the collaborative efforts of the Missing Persons Unit, Human Trafficking Unit, Child Abuse Unit, and Crime Reduction Units (CRU), resulting in the successful location of 31 youths.

The primary goal of this operation was to find and rescue runaway youths between the ages of 12 and 17 who were at risk of falling victim to human trafficking. The operation aimed to ensure the safe return of these young individuals to their parents or guardians in time for the upcoming school year.

Highly trained search teams, comprised of uniformed deputies and investigators specializing in Human Trafficking and Child Abuse, were strategically deployed throughout Harris County. On August 11, Erika Salazar, 42, was arrested for Harboring a Runaway Child. In another case, deputies discovered a young female in Louisiana who may be a potential victim of human trafficking. The HCSO will continue to work with law enforcement agencies both locally and in Louisiana to ensure the safety of this individual.

Sheriff Ed Gonzalez expressed his gratitude to the teams involved and praised the dedication of the deputies and investigators. He stated, “Our mission to protect our youth and ensure their safety remains a top priority. This operation demonstrates our commitment to serve and protect our community’s most vulnerable, especially as they face potential risks and challenges.”

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