By Farrah Fazal
ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - Behind the red brick, inside the windows, and past the big steel doors, is a secret home in St. Louis.
It's a place where a world of hurt comes walking through the door, every time an officer brings a rescued young woman or girl.
"This home is dedicated to victims of sex trafficking," said Pat Bradley. He opened the doors in December. It's the only shelter in the Midwest for victims of Sex and Labor trafficking.
"It tells me there's not much help for these girls. For every girl we know about, there's a hundred we don't, we can't get our hands on just yet," said Bradley.
He runs trafficking shelters in Cambodia and Ethiopia. The FBI told him sex trafficking is huge problem in his own backyard in St. Louis. He said traffickers, smugglers, and pimps are selling girls on the streets of St. Louis every night. They also sell them on Backpage and recruit them on Facebook.
Bradley relies on law enforcement to rescue girls and women. Five stayed at the shelter since it opened.
Two more came in the doors this past week. They were all Americans. Bradley knows so many more victims are Mexican or Central American girls. It's hard to find them. They don't speak English. They are hidden in communities in St. Louis, where people won't tell.
"Organized crime already has the infrastructure to move drugs in so what's the difference if you are moving drugs or people," said Bradley.
The home can accommodate twenty two victims. He's got enough money to keep the doors open for 10 months. If donations don't come in, he will have to close the only home that's a haven for trafficking victims.
He also needs toiletries, makeup, and gift cards so he the victims can buy clothes. They often come in with only the clothes they wear on the streets.
Bradley is hoping somebody will read or see this story and call 314-487-1400. He hopes somebody will recognize a girl forced and coerced into selling herself and call that number. He also wants law enforcement across the Metro area and the Midwest to know they can bring trafficking victims to the shelter.