(WLNS) – Stuart Dunnings has not been charged with human trafficking but his charge of pandering is looked at by local officials as a case of human trafficking.
State Senator Judy Emmons, who has worked to pass multiple bills on human trafficking in Michigan, believes there is no doubt on what the charges against Dunnings come down to.
“When I look at the charges and I look at the examples given, for me it’s trafficking,” Emmons said.
Emmons hopes this situation leads to more discussion on the topic that she has spent much of her time in office fighting.
“This particular case for human trafficking will raise the awareness and help define really what trafficking is in Michigan,” Emmons said.
The setback of the case, Emmons says, is that Dunnings was a trusted civil servant who would protect and uphold the law, and now victims may question just how trustworthy officials are.
“They do not trust law enforcement, they have had experiences in the past and rightly or wrongly, It does color their perception,” Emmons said.
In response to Dunnings possibly tainting the picture of law enforcement for those in need of help, Attorney General Press Secretary Andrea Bitely says one man’s actions do not reflect those working in the government as a whole.
“We’re here for you, we are working hard to make sure that victims of human trafficking, their voices are heard,” Bitely said.
At this point, the Attorney General’s office is continuing to investigate into the charges and to hear more information from anyone who knows more information. They will not know if and when Dunnings may be charged on a Federal level for human trafficking at this time.