The scantily dressed teenager stood on the hotel balcony taking nervous drags from her cigarette. She’d been in downtown Ottawa for almost two weeks, forced to have sex with a long line of men.
But on that warm summer night in 2011, one man standing outside her hotel room door had something very different in mind.
Ottawa police Det. Shane Henderson had received a tip from hotel staff about a 17-year-old girl they believed was a prostitute.
So the unassuming policeman did something that would change both their lives and pull back the curtain on the human-trafficking industry in the nation’s capital: He knocked on the door.
These are the stories of how the constable and the teenager met at a Cooper Street hotel and how their journey together would lead to Canada’s first human trafficking conviction involving an adult who had placed a child into prostitution.