Nova Scotia

Human trafficking charges laid after N.B. girl rescued in N.S. hotel parking lot

Police say the girl, 16, called 911 and said she didn't know where she was.

Police say 16-year-old girl called 911 earlier this week saying she didn't know where she was

Police sirens, which are flashing red and blue.
The glow of a police cruiser's lights is seen in this file photo. Police in Bridgewater, N.S., say a 16-year-old girl is safe after calling 911 on Tuesday and reporting she didn't know where she was. (Gian-Paolo Mendoza/CBC)

Warning: This story contains distressing details.

A 16-year-old New Brunswick girl told police in Bridgewater, N.S., that she was moved from place to place and sexually assaulted over the course of about a month.

Two Maritimers face charges related to human trafficking in connection with the allegations.

Police said Friday the girl managed to escape early in the evening of Nov. 9 and called 911. She didn't know where she was, but she gave the dispatcher enough information that police were able to find her in the parking lot of a hotel on North Street in Bridgewater.

"She was anxious and visibly shaking and she also had no identification or money," said Deputy Chief Danny MacPhee of the Bridgewater police.

"She informed our officers that she was from New Brunswick and that she was staying with adults that had also been keeping her cellphone from her until that moment."

'This is serious trauma'

MacPhee said the girl told police she'd been with a construction crew that stopped at various hotels in different communities around Nova Scotia.

The girl is safely back in New Brunswick, he said.

"Our main worry was to make sure that she could be in a safe place and she could get the care she needed," said MacPhee. 

"As the survivor of a sexual offence and as a youth, with the allegations being made, this is serious trauma that she went through."

2 people face charges

Police have charged two people: Bruce Nicholas Gilroy, 30, of Brookdale, N.S., and Chelsey Wilson, 28, of Moncton, N.B.

They face charges including sexual assault, unlawful confinement, administering a noxious substance and recruiting a young person for the purpose of exploiting sexual services.

Gilroy and Wilson appeared in Bridgewater provincial court on Nov. 16 and were released on bail with strict conditions, including having no direct or indirect contact with the complainant and not to be within 10 metres of her residence.

The complainant's identity is protected under a publication ban.

Gilroy and Wilson are expected back in court Dec. 1 to enter pleas.

Bridgewater police have enlisted the help of Nova Scotia's human trafficking unit because they believe the case may not be an isolated incident and could include other communities, including in New Brunswick.