Polk County Police Officer Accused of Receiving Sexual Favors from Teen
A Haines City police officer was arrested Thursday for allegedly receiving oral sex from a teenage prostitute while in uniform. The 25-year-old cop supposedly offered the teen’s pimp favors, acting in his role as a law enforcement official, in exchange for oral sex.
The officer evidently resigned from his position with the Polk County Sheriff’s Office following his arrest.
The suspected pimp, a Polk County school bus attendant, is accused of running a company called “Genuine Quality Entertainment” out of a Haines City home and charging around $60 for sex with teens.
According to the police reports, the victims were 14 and 16 years old when the prostitution first started and they were supposedly forced to have sex with their alleged pimp numerous times.
The former officer was charged with sexual battery by a law enforcement officer, lewd battery and official misconduct. The suspected pimp was charged with bribery of a law enforcement officer, procuring a minor under 18 years-of-age for prostitution and sex trafficking. All of the charges these men face are felonies.
Arrest reports indicate that the former officer was recorded inside the home where the alleged prostitution took place asking the accused pimp for sex with one of the teens for free. The investigation is ongoing.
This case is particularly interesting because of the man’s former position as a police officer. Undoubtedly, prosecutors will seek maximum consequences for the man’s alleged actions because of his authoritative role in the community.
When sexual battery is carried out by a law enforcement official or any person in a position of authority and the victim is 12 years of age or older, this is classified as a first-degree felony in the state of Florida punishable by 30 years in state prison. The occupations that are thought of as positions of control under this Florida statute include law enforcement officers, correctional and probation officers, employees or agents of the government and any other type of officers that supervise community control, detention or similar settings. On a side note, the victim of a sexual battery case involving an authoritative official usually can make a civil rights claim or a personal injury claim against the agency that hired the accused.
Cases involving officers and officials accused of sexual battery are usually investigated to the fullest extent. With that said, false allegations against an officer or official are taken quite seriously. Florida has a special statute that protects law enforcement officers from being the target of false claims made against them; a victim that is discovered of telling lies or untruths could be charged with providing false allegations, a third-degree felony.
When it comes to sex crimes in Florida, it is important for the Florida Sex Crimes Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton to perform an early exploration of the facts surrounding a particular case. This includes speaking to any witnesses and examining any evidence so that favorable findings can be reported to the State Attorney’s Office before they file any formal charges.
If you are an officer or government official that has been accused of sexual battery in Central Florida or anywhere throughout the state, contact the Florida Sex Crimes Defense Attorneys at Whittel & Melton online or call us toll-free at 866-608-5529.