15-year-old was ‘passed off’ to men in sex-trafficking case, Kentucky police say

A 15-year-old girl said she was passed off to multiple men in exchange for money, Kentucky police said.

Steven Hargrove, 40, of La Vergne, Tennessee, was involved with the girl for “some time,” according to Kentucky State Police.

The girl’s mother said she was following a vehicle her missing daughter was in Monday night in Daviess County, state police said. She told police the car stopped at a gas station, where an officer soon arrived, according to an arrest citation.

The trooper found Hargrove driving the 15-year-old girl and he was “removed from the vehicle” and arrested, state police said.

The girl told the trooper she met Hargrove in different locations around Owensboro, where he would use her for sex, a citation states. She was also “passed off” by Hargrove to other men in Kentucky and surrounding states, state police said.

In exchange for sex, the girl received money, pets and other items from Hargrove, a citation states. She initially lied about her age, but Hargrove continued the acts when he found out her real age, state police said.

Hargrove was also with the girl Sunday, the arrest citation states.

He was charged with promoting human trafficking of a victim under 18 years old and placed in the Daviess County Jail.