Thursday, November 15 2012, 09:57 PM CST
Trapped: Woman details how she was forced into prostitution
By Katie Conner/KTVL.com
PORTLAND, Ore. -- A teen's naive quest for love landed her in a world of prostitution and drugs.
When Shelby was 17, she joined an online dating website and met a man named Anthony Pranzetti.
The two decided to meet in person at a movie one afternoon. Pranzetti told Shelby he was running late and to wait for him.
Shelby waited an hour and when she decided to leave, Pranzetti showed up.
"I thought, it's not a big deal," said Shelby. "I didn't think anything of it but that was the first red flag."
When Pranzetti finally showed up, sparks flew and Shelby fell fast for her first love.
Shelby said the two started "doing normal things, like going to dinner, going to movies, hanging out."
It all changed one night when Pranzetti gave Shelby a caffeine pill, to help her stay awake while studying.
About a week later, Shelby she tried to leave Pranzetti's home. He stopped Shelby and demanded she get in his car.
Shelby says Anthony then drove her to a bad area of Portland and said "give me your arm."
At that point, according to Shelby, Anthony explained he had been giving her meth to her for the past week.
"Look you have two options give me your arm or figure out how to get home," said Shelby. "From that point my whole life changed."
Shelby says for the next four months, she was drugged, beaten and forced to sleep with more than 200 men and 30 women, all for drugs and money she never saw.
"I would say every other day to every two days I was beaten in some way and that's they're way of control. if he can lay a hand on me? what's stopping him from pulling a trigger?"
According to Shelby, Pranzetti even hid a microphone in her cell phone, making it impossible for her to call for help.
"He could hear every conversation, he could read every text message I sent. so he was watching everything," Shelby said.
It wasn't until four months later Shelby finally got a break. Police arrested Pranzetti for shooting up in his car.
During that time Shelby went home to grab clothes. She says an officer was waiting for her and explained who Pranzetti really was.
It turns out Pranzetti was 44-years-old, engaged and a convicted sex offender. Back in 2001 Pranzetti was busted for prostitution, delivering drugs to a minor and two counts of third-degree sodomy. He was also charged with first-degree kidnapping and first-degree sodomy in that case, but the charges were dismissed in a plea agreement.
Unable to process, Shelby ran inside and tried to kill herself.
"The next thing i know i woke up a psychiatric unit," said Shelby. "For the next ten days I spent my time detoxing and talking about what happened and learning stuff about Anthony stuff I didn't know."
Pranzetti was sentenced to over 10 years in prison.
Shelby is moving forward with her life, earning a degree in Psychology at Portland State University.
Her goal is to one day to work with other girls who have gone through a similar experience.
"I don't want people to feel sorry for me, it happened. I'm moving on with my life but I do want people to know the dangers."
Dangers Shelby wish she knew about back on that first date.