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Alleged pimp faces murder charge after deadly high-speed chase

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District Attorney George Gascon discusses the case of Michael Brown at the Hall of Justice on Thursday, June 14, 2018. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

A man who allegedly led police on a deadly high-speed chase that started with the kidnapping of a sex worker in San Francisco on Sunday has been charged with murder and human trafficking, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Michael Brown, 42, is accused of being behind the wheel of a car that crashed into a light pole in Emeryville during a pursuit by the San Francisco Police Department. The passenger, 40-year-old Daphne Bailey, who is said to have helped kidnap the sex worker, died in the fiery wreck.

Prosecutors say Brown fled police after beating the sex worker at Turk and Leavenworth streets in the Tenderloin and throwing her in the trunk of his car. Brown allegedly let the young woman out of the trunk on Van Ness Avenue before speeding away from the scene and leading police on a chase over the Bay Bridge.

“This is a case that speaks to the problem of human trafficking in our community,” District Attorney George Gascon told reporters at the Hall of Justice. “We know we are a hub for human trafficking. In this particular case we wound up with a very tragic outcome.”

Brown allegedly attacked the sex worker because she left him for another pimp. In court records, prosecutor Michael Swart said Brown began to pimp her in April and controlled her, taking away her belongings while she sold her body for sex and forcing her to sleep outside if she did not make enough money.

On May 28, the woman left Brown after he allegedly punched her in the face for withholding money from him, according to court records.

On June 10, Swart said Brown had Bailey coax the woman into meeting her in the Tenderloin to celebrate her birthday with a cake and a bag of cocaine. Instead, Brown allegedly struck the woman in the face, knocked her to the ground and dragged her to his car.

Gascon said the young woman was seriously hurt in the kidnapping and that there may be additional victims who Brown pimped.

Court records show Brown has criminal convictions dating back to 1996, when he was sentenced to two years in state prison for robbery. He has served time for four other convictions including firearms possession and resisting arrest.

Brown is expected to enter a plea at a later date. He is also facing charges including conspiracy to commit human trafficking, kidnapping, domestic violence and assault with intent to cause great bodily harm.

Brown is being represented by Deputy Public Defender Eric Quandt, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment through a spokesperson.

mbarba@sfexaminer.com

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