A multi-agency human trafficking operation netted two arrests in Kiowa County, December 5-6, 2019.
The Kiowa County Sheriff's Office (KCSO), Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) conducted the human trafficking, sexual exploitation of children and prostitution operation in Eads, Colorado to identify individuals attempting to engage in illegal activities involving children.
In the evening hours of Friday, December 6, 2019, investigators working undercover in Eads identified Luis Hernandez, 37, of Fountain, who allegedly wanted to participate in human trafficking activities involving a minor. When contacted by investigators, Hernandez fled the scene nearly striking an undercover agent, and leading law enforcement in a pursuit that ended on Colorado State Highway 287 at Milepost 120 north of Eads. While no one was injured in the pursuit, a Kiowa County Sheriff's Office vehicle sustained significant damage along with the suspect's car.
Hernandez was arrested and taken to the Bent County Detention Facility where he is being held without bond. Hernandez faces charges of Human trafficking - Sexual Servitude, Felony Eluding and Reckless Driving.
Also Friday evening, an individual was contacted in Eads after allegedly expressing interest in engaging in sexual contact with a minor. Joshua Olmstead, 38, of Colorado Springs was identified by undercover agents and taken into custody without incident.
Olmstead was transported to the Bent County Detention Facility where he is being held without bond. Olmstead faces charges of Soliciting for Child Prostitution.
"It's important to note that human trafficking knows no geographic boundaries," said Kiowa County Sheriff Casey Sheridan. "These illegal activities occur in towns and cities big and small, and it's critical that we all work together to protect children in our communities."
"Collaboration within law enforcement is imperative in identifying and recovering victims of human trafficking," said Agent in Charge Christian Mohr who oversees the CBI's Human Trafficking Unit. "This week's operation in Kiowa County is another example of the Bureau's efforts to provide support to local law enforcement in addressing this important issue."