A man from North Carolina was arrested in the Port St. Lucie area on child molestation charges. Police reported that the individual told them he specifically moved to Port St. Lucie, Florida for the express purpose of pursuing relationships with two underage girls of 12 and 16 years of age.
The man, who is 30 years old, was arrested in June 2017 and faced charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. After the arrest, he paid his bail and agreed to forgo further contact with the girls, according to court papers.
Then, in November, investigators discovered additional details and the man received further charges. Specifically, he received five charges of lewd or lascivious battery. He was booked at the St. Lucie County jail at the beginning of December and received a bail that was set at $725,000.
According to a warrant that was filed on Tuesday, December 26, the man faces the five additional charges of lewd or lascivious battery of a child between the ages of 12 and 16.
Also, according to both police reports and court documents, the individual moved from Minnesota to Florida in February 2017, leaving his wife behind. He left for Florida after meeting an underage girl while playing an online game.
He claimed not to know the girl was underage until meeting her at a park in Port St. Lucie. However, the man continued to see the girl in spite of her age, according to the police.
The girl told police she started having sex with the man in his car within three to four weeks after he arrived in Florida.
Later, the girl introduced the man to a friend of hers. He and the other girl started a relationship in April, according to police. At that point, the man broke it off with the first girl, according to the court. He denied having sexual relations with either girl, according to police.
The man was investigated by police starting in May after a couple spotted him at a Walmart with a young girl. The girl’s parents and police told the man to stay away from the child, according to court documents.
Shortly after the man was arrested, police intervened when the child’s father told them he thought the man was still seeing his daughter.
According to interviews, the police were able to confirm that the man and girl had sexual relations three times.
Charges of sexual abuse of a minor are very serious. If you are in Florida and face similar charges, you need a Port Saint Lucie criminal defense lawyer representing you. Contact the Law Office of Jeffrey H. Garland, P.A. at (772) 242-6380 to get connected with a Port Saint Lucie criminal defense lawyer immediately.