CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – On August 5, 2020, Savannah Grissum, 22, of Douglasville, Georgia, and Alonzo Dean Westmoreland, 31, of Kennesaw, Georgia, were sentenced by the Honorable Curtis L. Collier in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
Both plead guilty in September 2019 to transporting in commerce an underage victim for the purpose of engaging in prostitution. As part of the plea agreement, Grissum and Westmoreland admitted to bringing the underage victim from Georgia to Tennessee for the purpose of prostitution. Grissum was sentenced to 78 months in prison, followed by six years’ supervised release; Westmoreland received 108 months in prison and six years’ supervised release. Both will be required to register with the sex offender registry in any state in which they reside, work, or attend school, and comply with special sex offender conditions during the supervised release.
In June 2018, Cobb County Police Department received a report of a runaway juvenile. The FBI from the Atlanta and Chattanooga divisions, were informed that the juvenile was located in Chattanooga. Deputies from the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office and the FBI responded to a local motel, where they recovered the underage victim who had been prostituted in Chattanooga for approximately four days. Grissum and Westmoreland used the proceeds from that illegal activity to pay for their hotel room and other expenses.
The prosecution was the result of a joint investigation led by FBI Special Agents Terrilynn James and Terri L. Green of the Chattanooga Division, and Nathan Whiteman of the Atlanta Division, Detective Robert Rush of the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, with assistance from Detectives Hunter Llewellyn and Ray Drew with the Cobb County Police Department.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Woods represented the United States in court proceedings.