Woman who escaped world of sex trafficking tells story of survival

PHOENIX (FOX 10) -- The dark world of sex trafficking often draws young people in when they are young and vulnerable, and often leaves them broken and empty, and a young woman who was drawn in, but managed to escape and find a better life, is talking about her ordeal.

At 20, Jadyn Ferguson is finding her voice, not only as an aspiring singer, but as a survivor who escaped the dark world of sex trafficking, and has a story to tell.

"Prostitution is a dirty word," said Ferguson. "Sex trafficking is a dirty word, and it's embarrassing it's not something I like to share. I don't want to tell people I lived with prostitutes."

Ferguson's mom died of cancer in 2010, and at the age of 12, she was left with her stepfather, which she claims was abusive. She was then placed in CPS, moving from home to home in Southern California. She was eventually running away, sometimes sleeping outside when a friend invited her to live with her.

Ferguson was 15 by then.

"She tells me she has a boyfriend she lives with, and she stays with him and he takes care of her and she said he's going to take care of me and that I'd be safe here," said Ferguson. "Being a 15-year-old with no other plans and no family, that sounded like a good option for me because I didn't have any options."

Sadly, it was this option that led Ferguson into the world of sex trafficking. As it turns out, several young women lived at the home and were prostitutes. Ferguson didn't have engage with the johns, but she accompanied the other girls on their so-called appointments set up by the boyfriend.

"I never had to do anything, but I sat in on every appointment, so I would watch these girls lay themselves down and have sex with them, and I'd take the money from the men," said Ferguson, who did that for 3 months.

Ferguson ran away, however, when the pimp started pressuring her to become more involved as a prostitute. She realizes now she was being groomed all along.

"He would take me out, I would get my nails done, he would take me to get my hair done, he would take me to the movies, he would tell me I was this beautiful girl, he would tell me I know your family wasn't there for you, so I'm going to be there for you," said Ferguson.

When Ferguson tried to return to her high school, police were there waiting with her caseworker.

"My caseworker flew me back to Arizona," said Ferguson. "I was placed in CPS custody, and Arizona had custody over me. I was in group homes for another few months."

Ferguson was placed in group homes in the West Valley. Eventually, a mentor suggested Ferguson come to church with her in Chandler. The mentor wanted Ferguson to meet one couple from church, Jeanne and Bill Honsaker.

"I was like, I don't want to go church," said Ferguson. "The last person I want to be involved with is God right now. I have not been the godliest person. She's like, come to church. It will be fine."

The Honsakers say it is God that made it all possible. After the two got to know Ferguson for six weeks, the Honsakers and their three grown children made a monumental decision that would change all of their lives.

At lunch one day, they told Ferguson, by then 16, of their decision.

"I said honey, you didn't know this but we've been praying and talking about bringing you into our family, and we don't want to foster you," said Jeanne. "We want to adopt you, and I want Bill to walk you down the aisle, and I want to hold your babies, in that order. I told her I'm going to make mistakes, but we love you, and you will never go without feeling loved."

Ferguson calls them the Brady Bunch and her rescuers. They call her a survivor and amazing. Though moving forward surrounded by security and a loving family, Ferguson still wants to remember her past. The life she escaped.