Sault Ste Marie man accused of using narcotics to coerce women faces 5 additional charges
SAULT STE MARIE, Mich. (WLUC) - A Sault Ste Marie man accused of using narcotics to coerce women into sex has been charged with 5 new counts in addition to the 14 he already faced.
Cody McCoy, 30, was arrested at the beginning of the month after an investigation by TRIDENT that began fall of 2022. TRIDENT said they believe he was taking advantage of young women struggling with addiction. Specifically, the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office said McCoy has been supplying drugs to women to obtain sex through coercion.
Since the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office first announced McCoy’s arrest and charges on March 6, the department said several more survivors have come forward. As a result, the Chippewa County Prosecutors Office has authorized 5 additional charges: one count of first degree criminal sexual conduct, one count of human trafficking, one count of delivery of fentanyl, and two counts of delivery of methamphetamine.
In total, McCoy now faces 19 charges. He was arraigned in district court Monday for the additional charges. His bond was set at $250,000, and he is currently lodged in the Chippewa County Correctional Facility.
This investigation is still ongoing. The Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office said if anyone else is a survivor of sexual assault or human trafficking, they are there to listen.
Last published: Mar 6, 2023 3:33:36 PM
A 30-year-old Sault Ste Marie man faces 13 charges related to human trafficking, sexual assault, and possession of narcotics. He is accused of using narcotics to coerce women into sex.
Since the fall of 2022, the Tri-County Drug Enforcement Team (TRIDENT) has been investigating Cody Mathieu McCoy, 30, of Sault Ste. Marie. TRIDENT said they believe he has been taking advantage of young women struggling with addiction. Specifically, the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office said McCoy has been supplying drugs to women to obtain sex through coercion.
Several search warrants have been conducted over the past few months resulting in the seizure of Methamphetamine, prescription medications and what the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office called an “overwhelming amount of video evidence spanning several years.
Mathieu was arraigned 91st District court on 13 criminal counts:
- 3 counts of human trafficking, forced labor
- Possession of methamphetamine
- Possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine.
- 3 counts of delivery of methamphetamine
- Criminal sexual assault 3rd degree
- 4 counts possession of controlled substance
Cody McCoy is a 4th Offense Habitual Offender.
This investigation is ongoing and upon review of the tens of thousands of videos seized from McCoy, the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office said it expects to uncover other victims.
McCoy is scheduled for a preliminary exam in the 91st District Court on April 24.
“There is power in numbers, and we want to hear from the other victims of McCoy’s abusive, painful, and criminal acts,” the Sheriff’s Office said.
According to the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office, the relationship between addiction and both labor and sex trafficking is recognized by the United States criminal justice system. According to the Office To Monitor and Combat Human Trafficking, the role of substance use disorder in human trafficking is powerful and pervasive.
TRIDENT said its detectives understand that addiction can increase a person’s vulnerability to being trafficked, initiated, and manipulated by the trafficker as a means of coercion and control, and can be used by the victim/survivor as a means of coping with the physical and psychological traumas of being trafficked both during captivity and after exiting the trafficking situation.
Chippewa County Sheriff Mike Bitnar explained the relationship between grooming, drug addiction, and human trafficking/sexual slavery in a video posted to Facebook following the press release.
The Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office would like to recognize the courage of the victims that have already come forward in this case. The department said it values their lived-experience in describing the torment of drug-based coercion.
In Michigan and in many States across America, taking advantage of those with addiction to get sexual favors or even to sell those favors to others for profit, is known as “drug coercion” forced labor and is illegal under Human Trafficking statutes.
If you are a person fighting addiction and has been forced to have sex to get drugs or to pay off a drug debt, the Human Trafficking Task Force said it wants you to reach out.
“You are not the criminal, you have a voice, and we will listen,” the organization said.
There are four ways to contact the Human Trafficking Task Force
- Call or Text the UPHTTF 24/7 confidential helpline (906) 299-9243
- Email email@example.com (UPHTTF –Upper Peninsula Human Trafficking Taskforce)
- Submit a Tip on the free Chippewa County Sheriff’s App.
- If you are in immediate danger, call 911.
The Trident Team would like to thank UP Human Trafficking Task Force and Operation Underground Railroad for providing investigative and financial assists.
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