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PHOENIX -- A comedy show will be held in Phoenix Saturday with the goal of both funding local efforts to fight commercial sexual exploitation and giving workers in the fight a night to laugh.

"People think comedy and this serious issue have no place together," said pastor Brad Pellish. "I have had caregiver after caregiver tell me this is the night of the year for me and I laughed silly for two hours. This will help give them permission to take a break, come apart, to honor people who deserve to be recognized. That's where Free to Laugh came from."

Pellish said Free to Laugh, the name of the comedy show, will feature three comedians this year using family-friendly jokes.

The show is not free, but Pellish said the money will go to several good places.

"Tickets are $25 and still available at the Comerica Theatre box office and the profits are going to Phoenix Police Vice Squad to buy new computers," he said. "We've used funds from previous events to pay for their wireless access so they can catch predators."

Other benefactors are Moma's House in the Valley, which serves adult survivors of commercial sexual exploitation, Catholic Charities Dignity House and Mending the Soul, which provides prevention and aftercare resources.

Jim Cross, Reporter

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