Angela Williams was as good as dead.
Around 10:00 a.m. on January 13, 2017, her estranged boyfriend, who also doubled as her pimp, Tyree Wright, had tracked her from Los Angeles to Las Vegas — where they met and began their professional and quasi-romantic relationship three years earlier .
That morning, then 36-year-old Wright showed up at the door of what Williams believed to be her safe haven, a hideout. He came with a bouquet of flowers as a peace offering for having nearly choked her unconscious on New Year’s Eve two weeks earlier. The strangulation was one of many attacks Williams faced when she wasn’t busy completing the $2,500 daily “quota” that Wright imposed on her through sex with countless other men.
But when she opened the door, Wright dropped the bouquet — and pulled out a metal club.
“The first hit with the nightstick hurt so much and it kept hitting me over and over for so long,” Williams, 38, of Houston, Texas, told The Post. Her story will be featured in the new documentary, Surviving Sex Trafficking, which is currently airing Amazon Prime.
Wright repeatedly hit her with his gun for 30 minutes, cracking her skull, fracturing her forearm, crushing her left hand, permanently damaging her finger and leaving more than 20 large welts on her face and body.
“I remember fainting when he hit me in the head with the metal club,” she said, noting that she still suffers from brain trauma. “If I had taken another hit, I would have died for sure.”
After the attack, Wright left her for dead, but a dejected Williams managed to stop a Good Samaritan, who drove her to the University Medical Center of Nevada for treatment.
The near-fatal incident marked her last day under a pimp’s rule after 15 harrowing years. During that time, she was trafficked through Texas, California, Nevada, Illinois, Massachusetts and New York City by a string of men – including former “Love & Hip Hop” star and record producer Jamal “Mally Mall” Rashid. (Rashid is currently serving a prison sentence for running his own prostitution service in Nevada.)
Williams, who is now a single mother to a three-year-old daughter, credits her escape to New York-based human trafficking firms Safe Horizon and LifeWay Network, which housed her in suburban Manhattan during her recovery from sexual bondage.
Wright — who is not her daughter’s father — was eventually arrested and is now serving a 29-year sentence on sex trafficking, second-degree kidnapping and battery charges related to Williams.
sisters in trauma
The film, executive produced by actress Alyssa Milano, Daytime Emmy winner Jeannie Mai and her husband, rapper Jay “Jeezy” Jenkins, explores the stories of women who made it through the sex trade to escape. The odds were against it – only 1% of the estimated 45 million people who are victims of human trafficking worldwide can escape the dirty trade.
While collecting the stories of survivors for the document from June 2019 to August 2020, director Sadhvi Siddhali Shree — an Iraq War veteran and Jain monk — found solace in their testimonies as she confronted the sexual trauma. At the age of 6 she was raped by a man hired to paint her family’s house.
“It was a very liberating and healing process for me,” Shree, 38, told The Post.
“If I’m still going through so much pain because of it [assault]’ said Shree – who also directed the award-winning 2017 documentary Stopping Traffic about the unsung heroes of the fight against sexual exploitation – ‘imagine someone being raped 20, 30, 40 times a day for profit. How are these sex trafficking survivors healing from this mental and emotional agony?”
The film also stars Kendra Geronimo, a former Miami stripper who was kidnapped into sex slavery over a decade ago.
She, like Williams, responded immediately when she saw Shree’s call to action on Instagram in February 2019, which read in part, “If you are a survivor and willing to be interviewed and be a part of our project please send a short but personal message CV.”
In the document, Geronimo alleges her unnamed pimp tricked other women — who were his prostitutes and their fellow strippers — into drinking a drug-infused drink in order to kidnap them to a South Carolina brothel.
There he locked her behind a locked door and bolted windows in her assigned room, where he regularly raped her at gunpoint or under threat of physical abuse.
After working as a prostitute for three months, Geronimo snatched her trafficker’s room keys, sprinted out of the brothel, and returned to Miami. Shortly after arriving in Florida, however, she discovered she was pregnant with her ex-pimp’s baby boy.
“I was like, ‘No, it can’t be that,'” Geronimo says of her pregnancy in the film.
But she credits her son, who is now a teenager, with saving her life.
“He was my target,” says Geronimo, who now runs a nonprofit organization focused on helping law enforcement fight sex trafficking. “He saved me from going back [to Miami] and drug and alcohol overdose or right back [stripping].”
Shree, along with sex trafficking survivor-turned-nurse Rachel Fischer, and fellow monk Sadhvi Anubhuti, have also chronicled the survival stories of sex trafficking refugees in the Philippines, India and Ethiopia.
Shree said connecting – and honoring – victims is critical to their healing.
“Facing the pain instead of repressing it is the only way we can ever be truly free.”
https://nypost.com/2022/04/21/sex-trafficking-victim-recounts-harrowing-escape-in-amazon-doc/ Sex trafficking victim tells Amazon document about harrowing escape