Investigators allege sex trafficking led to Sherman teen's death

17 year-old Mikayla Mitchell was found dead in a Dallas pond in July 2017. Investigators say a person of interest in her homicide case, was using her for sex trafficking.
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SHERMAN, Tex. (KXII) -- Research shows about 306 cases of sex trafficking were reported in Texas last year and one Texoma mother says her 17-year-old daughter was one of those cases.

In the second part of an interview, the mother says her daughter was lured into a bad crowd by being promised to live a lavish lifestyle, but instead, was tortured.

"She was brainwashed," said Mikayla Mitchell's mom, Jennifer Diamond. Diamond says her little girl was a pawn in the world of sex trafficking.

"It cuts me like a knife to think of her out there being used like that," Diamond said.

Mitchell dropped out of school and Diamond said she ran with the wrong crowd, which included Darnell Dwight Smith, also known as "Slick Rick." Dallas investigators said Smith was pimping Mitchell, among other girls. Diamond said she never knew Smith and didn't realize he had so much power over her daughter.

"I was naive because you think of your little girl as your little girl," Diamond said. "You don't think about them being mixed up with grown men."

Diamond doesn't know when it started, but by the age of 17 she said Mitchell was being trafficked in west Texas where she escaped to a convenience store in July.

That's when Diamond brought her daughter back to Sherman. Mitchell refused to talk about what happened. She wouldn't stay in the family's home, afraid they may be killed.

Six days later, Mitchell was found dead in a Dallas pond. Local media reported she was stabbed to death.

"That's what got her killed," Diamond said. "Because when he hit her there's no way anyone's going to hit her and her not hit back."

Smith is listed as a suspect in Mitchell's kidnapping and a person of interest in her homicide. He's now headed to prison for federal drug charges. Five days before Mitchell's death, Diamond's husband, Dr. Howard Gregg Diamond was arrested on federal prescription drug charges and is now awaiting trial.

Investigators said Dr. Diamond is not a suspect in Mitchell's death.

"When you lose a child, someone who you love so much," Diamond said fighting back tears. "Time just ..., time just doesn't make sense."

So far, no one has been charged for Mitchell's death but Dallas investigators are urging anyone with information to come forward.

If you want more information on sex trafficking, visit the National Human Trafficking Hotline's URL link on this page.

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