September 13, 2022 - SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Robert Pierre Duncan, 26, of Sacramento, was sentenced on September 12, 2022, to 30 years in prison for a conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking of a child, sex trafficking of a child, and escape from custody, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
On March 8, 2022, a federal jury found Duncan guilty on all counts of a three-count superseding indictment after a seven–day trial. According to evidence presented at trial, between September and October 2018, Duncan recruited a 17-year-old girl to engage in prostitution in Oakland and San Francisco. He frequently drove the victim to areas known for prostitution activity where he caused her to have sex with strangers for money, which he kept. Duncan also posted online prostitution ads depicting the victim and harbored the victim at an Oakland motel so she could have sex with sex buyers. Duncan was on parole for assault with a semiautomatic firearm at the time.
In late September 2018, law enforcement officers recovered the victim and sent the victim to a children’s group home in Woodland. However, a few weeks later, Duncan, working with his co-conspirator, Eva Christian, 25, extracted the victim from the children’s group home in the middle of the night. The next day, Duncan put the victim back to work engaging in prostitution on the streets of Oakland. Duncan kept his child victim at his Sacramento apartment thereafter. He also managed his trafficking of her from this location, using his cellphone and a GPS tracking application on that phone to monitor and direct the victim’s prostitution activity in Oakland.
On May 31, 2019, Duncan was arrested, but immediately broke free and fled through Midtown Sacramento until he was finally apprehended again several blocks away from the scene of his initial arrest. He fought the arresting officer so violently that the officer required surgery for an injury he sustained while arresting Duncan.
Evidence at trial also showed that Duncan sent a letter to Christian—his co-defendant—in which he urged her to lie about Duncan’s knowledge that his trafficking victim was 17 years old. Duncan’s letter encouraged his co‑defendant to claim that she could not remember various details about Duncan’s trafficking of the child victim.
This case was the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the California Department of Justice’s Special Operations Unit, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office, the Woodland Police Department, and the Oakland Police Department with assistance from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sam Stefanki prosecuted the case.
On April 8, 2021, co-defendant Christian pleaded guilty to one count of misprision of a felony. She is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 19, 2022.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. Click on the “resources” tab for information about internet-safety education.
Source: DOJ Release