2008-03-21 / Front Page

Local Busted For Imprisonment, Prostitution

Used Internet To Draw Johns
By Miriam Rosenberg

Local Busted For Imprisonment, Prostitution

Used Internet To Draw Johns

By Miriam Rosenberg

 A Rockaway man and two accomplices have been charged with the unlawful imprisonment of two women and with promoting prostitution by posting photos of the victims on the website Craigslist, in order to attract customers for prostitution.

The defendants are identified as Thomas Spann, 30, Tamisha Allen, 25, and Percressa Gaines, 19, all of 316 Beach 68 Street in Arverne.
According to a spokesperson for Queens DA Richard A. Brown, the listing attracted a number of men to the Arverne address where, in exchange for money, they engaged in oral and sexual intercourse with the victims.
“The information superhighway that is the Internet has a sidewalk that the defendants are accused of using to troll for customers to have sex with two women who they put to ‘work’ in the sex trade,” said Brown. “Prostitution is not a victimless crime, but a terrifying and despicable offense against society practiced by callous jackals who enslave young women without hope and victimize them one day at a time.”
The two women, ages 20 and 25 – whose names are being withheld because of the nature of the crime – met Spann on the evening of March 12.
In the early morning hours of March 13, they went with him to his Beach 68 Street home. There, despite the objections of the 25-year-old, he engaged in non-consensual intercourse with her.
Later, Spann allegedly took a gun and showed it to the same victim making sure she knew it was loaded.
According to the complaint, when the two women asked if they could leave during their first day at the residence Spann replied, “Take a risk if you want to get some shots popped around your ass.”
On March 14, Spann and Gaines allegedly drove the victims to the Ramada Plaza Hotel. There they were met by Allen who was in possession of a .38 revolver belonging to Spann, which was later recovered by police. While at the hotel, the 25-year-old was forced to engage in a “two for one” special with Gaines and a male customer for money that went to Spann.
On March 15, the older victim managed to escape and alert hotel staff, who then contacted the Port Authority Police at JFK Airport.
As a result of a search warrant the following items were recovered at Spann’s Arverne home: one loaded 9 mm pistol with 12 rounds of ammunition in the magazine, one box containing 45 rounds of .38 caliber ammunition, one box containing 50 rounds of 9 mm ammunition and another box containing 40 rounds of 9 mm ammunition.
The defendants are charged with second-degree promoting prostitution and second-degree unlawful imprisonment. Spann and Allen are also charged with second-degree criminal possession of a weapon and Spann is additionally charged with the crimes of promoting prostitution, third-degree criminal possession of a weapon and sexual misconduct. If convicted, the defendants each face up to 15 years in prison.
The defendants were arraigned at Queens Criminal Court on Monday, March 17. Spann was ordered held on $25,000 bond or $125,000 cash. Allen’s bail was set at $15,000 bond or $5,000 cash. Gaines was released without bail. According to the Department of Corrections, Spann and Allen were still in custody as of Wednesday. All three are due back in court on April 2.

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