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AdultFYI’s Pimp of the Week: Marcus “Choice” Williams aka Cross Country Redd

from The details read like a cheap novel: a nationwide prostitution ring with high-priced hookers working in fancy hotels; a clientele that supposedly included pro athletes and politicians; all orchestrated by a pimp nicknamed “Cross Country Redd” who operated from the unlikeliest of locales – Little Elm, Texas.

The pimp, authorities say, is Marcus Choice Williams, who was scheduled to go on trial Feb. 1 in Dallas on federal prostitution trafficking charges. But on the eve of the trial, Williams skipped town and hasn’t been seen or heard from since.

“I hope he comes forward, because I was planning on beating a few of these cases,” said his attorney, Scott H. Palmer of Dallas. “I don’t know where he is.”

Two co-defendants, Kenya Thomas and Preston Petitt, have already pleaded guilty to related federal charges and are awaiting sentencing. They agreed to testify against Williams, 35.

Attorneys for the two declined to comment, as did federal prosecutors.

But court documents and interviews with police speak volumes about the case against Williams and his enterprise, which records say had been in operation since at least 2006.

“Williams’ modus operandi was to recruit vulnerable women, specifically single mothers, from troubled backgrounds and, if necessary, to use a combination of deception, fraud, coercion, threats and physical violence to compel them to engage in prostitution or to continue engaging in prostitution on his behalf,” court records say.

The documents say that Williams forced the women to earn an unspecified daily cash quota and, if they worked out of town, to transfer all of the money to him via electronic wire. Williams raked in hundreds of thousands of dollars over the years, the documents say.

And authorities say that while Williams wasn’t above forcing his stable out on the streets for back-seat quickies when he thought they hadn’t made him enough money, his was no fly-by-night operation. The prostitutes – authorities say they knew of about 30 – often flew to their liaisons in cities such as Houston, Boston, Washington and Atlanta. They also worked in Dallas.

According to court documents, Williams has been a pimp in Texas since 2003 but broadened his enterprise to other states in 2006, operating out of his modest single-story home in Denton County’s Little Elm: population 23,350.

He gained control of prostitutes by getting them to fall for him, said Little Elm police Sgt. Larry Denison, who headed the department’s initial investigation of Williams, which led to the federal charges.

Denison said that Williams would often enter into romantic relationships, but once the women – often of meager means to begin with – became financially and emotionally dependent on him, he forced them into prostitution.

Authorities eventually found receipts for hotels, airline tickets and wire transfers in the names of Williams, Thomas and one of the prostitutes. Investigators never found a client list, but Denison said the prostitutes – though they did not know specific names – were certain that their patrons included Washington-based politicians and foreign dignitaries as well as pro athletes from some of the other cities where they worked.

Williams employed Thomas, who has two children by him, as his “bottom,” the prostitute “most responsible for assisting a pimp with the management of his operation,” documents say.

And records show he also employed Petitt, who “cooked, cleaned and provided au pair services for Williams’ and Thomas’ children, as well as the children of the women being prostituted by Williams.”

While the women sometimes earned upward of $2,000 a day, their lives were unpleasant. According to authorities, Williams kept virtually all of the money.

When the women wouldn’t comply with his demands, Williams simply beat them until they did, police say.

The violence and intimidation wasn’t limited to beatings, Denison said.

“There was one particular girl, he took an electrical cord that had the female end cut off and just had the wires exposed, and he put it up to her and threatened to plug it in,” Denison said.

But Palmer said the accusations are exaggerated. He said that Williams, who had a barber’s license and once owned a hair salon in Frisco, was not prone to violence.

“There’s nothing about him that screams violence,” Palmer said. “Over time, people can get angry at each other. A lot of these women were jealous of each other.

“Their stories were so outlandish and so ridiculous. [One woman] says that he basically hogtied and brutally raped her, but you need a microscope to see any marks on her wrists or ankles. There’s a lot of credibility issues here.”

Denison said he believes the women didn’t flee because they had little or no money of their own, combined with the fear of retribution from Williams. They felt trapped, he said.

“Could they have left? Yes,” Denison said. “Did he have a little fear in them that if they left, he would do something to them or their families? Yes. They were scared to death.”

That fear was on the mind of the woman who told police a story in 2007 that eventually led to Williams’ arrest. She said she met Williams in May of that year and he showed her his salon, telling her he planned to open another one in Washington and that he wanted her to manage it. The two began to “hang out as if they were a couple,” according to an affidavit filed in the case.

Denison said that the two went to Washington and almost immediately, Williams forced the woman to work as a prostitute. The woman, who was making up to $1,800 a day, was arrested for prostitution. Williams bailed her out, then took her to Boston. She escaped and returned to Texas.

When Williams got back to Texas, he called the woman and she agreed to meet him for breakfast. She said he took her to his Little Elm home, where her hands and feet were bound with an electrical cord. She said that she was slapped, choked, and kicked repeatedly. She was also threatened with a knife and spit on.

Then, she said, Williams ordered her to go on some “dates,” which she did at a Dallas hotel. She made $350, but she said Williams told her that was not enough. When they returned to Little Elm, Williams “put a dog collar on her and made her stand next to a wall for about 10 minutes,” the affidavit said. He then asked the woman if she had learned her lesson, records say, and she said that she had.

“Finally, she’s able to sneak a phone into the bathroom and calls 911,” Denison said.

But Palmer, who called Williams “an interesting guy,” said the women and police have got his client all wrong.

“He’s a pretty savvy businessman. He’s a good marketer. He’s an entrepreneur,” Palmer said. “He didn’t live lavishly at all. He was not your stereotypical pimp with a big old Lincoln.”


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