A recent study on sex trafficking in Hawaii claims that victims are being exploited by the very people who are supposed to protect them, police officers. 

The findings of the study done by the State Commission on the Status of Women and Arizona State University, was presented to the Honolulu Police Commission on Wednesday.

The report called, "Sex Trafficking in Hawaii: The Stories of Survivors" shared stories of 22 women and girls.  Nearly half say police officers were among their clients.

One of the participants, who wishes to remain anonymous says quote "The same people that are charging you for prostitution are the people turning around and buying it from you."

"This ranged from cops asking for sexual favors to more coercive situations like I'll let you go if you do X, Y, or Z for me.'  Bring customers after hours in exchange for cigarettes or gas money," explained Khara Jabola-Carolus, with the Hawaii State Commission on the Status of Women. 

Other key findings, the average age that girls were initiated into sex trafficking was 14 years old and spent more than a decade in sex trade. 

It's part two of the study, the first part was released last September, and was about the market for online sex buyers in Hawaii.

 Honolulu Police Chief Susan Ballard issued this statement on Thursday:
             

"I am deeply concerned and will continue to ask the Commission to provide additional information so that HPD can investigate.  We respect the participants’ privacy and understand why they do not want to be identified.  However, if they can provide us with when or where the activity occurred and a description of the officer, we will investigate to the fullest extent possible.  HPD does not condone the behavior described in the study under any circumstances."