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Stephen M. Knoepfler

Chief, Human Trafficking Unit Special Victims Division Office of the Bronx County District Attorney

Stephen Knoepfler has been the Chief of the Human Trafficking Unit since it was created in June 2019.  The Human Trafficking Unit focuses on rescuing and providing social services and resources to victims of sex trafficking and labor trafficking, as well as investigating, apprehending, and convicting those who promote, profit from, or patronize the commercial sex trade.  HTU consists of a close-knit group of 3 to 4 felony ADAs, a designated Crime Victims Advocate, and a trial preparation assistant.

A graduate of New York University School of Law, Steve has worked at the Bronx D.A.’s Office since October 2010. Prior to joining the Special Victims Division as HTU’s Chief, Steve spent his entire career in the Investigations Division, beginning with the Rackets Bureau where he handled organized crime and public integrity cases.

Steve has led or second-chaired seventeen trials—including seven felony trials, and nine jury trials—including a fifteen-witness sex trafficking and witness tampering jury trial.  In 2018, he led a Frye hearing on whether the psychological phenomenon of traumatic bonding is generally accepted in the psychological community; the favorable ruling will set a precedent for allowing this testimony in all future special victim cases.

Office of the Bronx County District Attorney