Inmate Serving A 30-Year Sentence In Florida State Prison Sentenced For Mailing Threatening Letters To Florida Judges
Jacksonville, Florida – U.S. District Judge Timothy J. Corrigan today sentenced Richard Anthony Moffett (31, Jacksonville) to 25 years in federal prison for using force, fraud, and coercion to cause multiple victims to engage in prostitution. The court will make a determination as to the amount of restitution Moffett owes to each of his five victims at a later date. Moffett had pleaded guilty on June 7, 2019.
According to court documents and information presented at the sentencing hearing, in the middle of 2016, Moffett relocated from Ohio to Florida. He resided in various hotels in Jacksonville, where he met his first two victims, K.W. and K.D. Moffett began forcing K.W. to engage in prostitution, keeping all of her money, supplying her with drugs, and regularly beating her. Sometime in December 2016, Moffett began selling heroin to D.D., a third victim. D.D. began working for Moffett, providing commercial sex to others, and gave all of the money she made to Moffett. Moffett exploited D.D.’s heroin addiction to coerce her into engaging in commercial sex acts. A few months later, Moffett came to believe that D.D. had stolen $50 from him. Moffett pointed a pistol at D.D., who attempted to flee from the hotel room. K.W., who was present at the time, grabbed D.D. by the hair, and Moffett twice stomped D.D. on the head. D.D. ultimately escaped.
Around February 2017, Moffett met his fourth victim, S.B., when she began purchasing heroin from him. Moffett invited S.B. and K.D. to travel with him to Ohio, purportedly to meet his two newly-born children. Once in Ohio, Moffett informed S.B. and K.D. that they would need to engage in prostitution in order to make enough money to return to Florida. S.B. and K.D., lacking financial and transportation resources, did so. In March 2017, Moffett transported S.B. and K.D. back to Florida. After returning to Florida, K.D. told Moffett, as a ruse, that she had a commercial sex “date” coming to the hotel, and Moffett left the hotel. K.D. then phoned a friend who came to pick her up. Moffett attempted to coerce K.D. to return to him by calling her multiple times and leaving threatening messages.
Meanwhile, Moffett continued to force K.W. and S.B. to engage in commercial sex acts out of various hotels in Jacksonville. In April 2017, Moffett coerced a fifth victim, S.A., into working for him. S.A. had previously purchased heroin from Moffett and contacted him after she became homeless. Moffett took S.A. in, and, the next day, informed her she would need to engage in prostitution to pay her way. During the time that K.W., S.B., and S.A. were working under Moffett’s control, Moffett would withhold heroin from them so that they would get “dope sick” as a means of coercing them to engage in commercial sex “dates” at his direction. When S.B. informed Moffett that she wanted to leave, Moffett gave her a bill totaling approximately $3,000 that he claimed S.B. needed to pay him for drugs, food, and shelter, before she could leave. Moffett then forced the S.B. to have sex with him and locked her in a bathroom for an entire day as punishment. Ultimately, S.B. and S.A. were able to escape from Moffett when S.A. was arrested by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office for a prostitution offense. S.A., who was so terrified of Moffett that she attempted to hide underneath the floor mat of the JSO patrol vehicle in which she was detained, informed detectives that Moffett was her “pimp.” During this time, S.B. was able to escape. Moffett continued to exploit K.W. until he was arrested by JSO in November 2017.
This case was investigated by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, and the State Attorney’s Office, Fourth Judicial Circuit. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Laura Cofer Taylor and Special Assistant United States Attorney Erin Wolfson.