Case Study #1Arianna’s Story


Age, gender, demographics (ethnicity, sexual identity), living situation

  • 16 year old, Hispanic, female
  • Special education

How victim was recruited/trafficking:

Arianna was recruited at the city bus stop


Arianna is a low functioning special education student, both her mother and sister are also special education. The family is extremely poor. Arianna started showing up to school looking very nice, nails were done, a new haircut and was carrying new and different (expensive) purses.

School staff was excited to see her taking such good care of herself and asked what changed. She said she had a boyfriend and he was taking care of her. Arianna stated that she met her new boyfriend at the bus stop and was so excited to finally have someone who loved her now. While Arianna and the school social worker were talking, her phone rang and she immediately answered it. The school social worker reminded her of the cell phone policy in school and was told that she had to answer it, because her boyfriend bought her the phone and got upset if she didn’t answer.

The school social worker started to talk to her about healthy and safe relationships and Arianna assured the school social worker that this was a safe relationship and that her boyfriend loved her. Eventually, Arianna said her boyfriend told her that she was able to make him happy because she took such good care of him. Arianna stated that her boyfriend told her that now wants her to take care of his friends and make them feel good, too.


When Arianna left school she was still with this man and doing whatever she could to make him happy. She did not graduate.

Discussion for Case Studies:

  1. What were some of the victim’s vulnerabilities?
  2. How did the sex trafficker exploit those vulnerabilities?
  3. What changes happened in the victim’s life?
  4. Who in the victim’s life should have noticed these changes? What could they have done?
  5. What were the missed opportunities to prevent this victim’s sex trafficking experiences?
  6. If there is no resolution: how many different ways could this story end?
  7. How could this victim’s peers have noticed these changes? Who could they have told?
  8. If this student came to your school, how can the students support them?
  9. If this student came to your school, how can the staff support them?
  10. How can you as a class, help develop awareness about sex trafficking and prevent more victimization?