ORLANDO, FL - August 10, 2020 - According to an online news report published on the Orlando Sentinel, a 31-year-old man was arrested for allegedly sexually abusing a teenage girl for many years. The news report claims that the suspect had been sexually abusing the child since 2015. The suspect was a competitor and 2019 "American Ninja Warrior" champion in 2019.
According to the news story, the girl met the suspect during a special event back in 2014. The event had several "American Ninja Warrior" contestants in attendance. At that time, the victim stated that she and the suspect met, exchanged cellphone numbers, and began texting each other. Soon the two made plans for her to visit his gym located in Hamden, Connecticut. The suspect allegedly offered her a birthday gift of a sexual nature when they would meet. At the time, the girl was 14 and would be turning 15 years of age. The suspect was 26-years-old at the time of the illicit sexting.
The suspect, now 31-year-old, is now living in St. Cloud, Florida. The suspect was arrested on criminal allegations that the suspect manipulated the young girl into several sexual abuse encounters over the past several years. According to the report, there are other allegations against the suspect.
In 2019, the suspect won the television competition, which awarded the suspect $1 million in cash. The suspect was arrested in Orlando by the U.S. Marshals Service office. The suspect is currently being held without the possibility of bail at the Seminole County jail. The suspect is facing extradition to the State of New Jersey, where the suspect will be tried for felony sex crimes. The teen girl traveled to the suspect's gym back in 2015, according to the United States Attorney's Office for the District of New Jersey. The report alleges that once the suspect's girlfriend left the to gym property, around lunch hour, the suspect sexually abused the young girl inside his office and at other parts of the suspect's gym.
The girl informed her mother concerning the alleged sexual abuse, and the mother confronted the suspect. The mother stated that the suspect did not deny sexual abuse. However, the suspect stated that he did not know the age of her daughter. A month later, the suspect began communicating with the underage girl again about a sexual encounter, and the suspect tried to make plans to meet the girl, according to the news report. According to a prosecutor in the case, the suspect met the girl in New Jersey, took her to a parking lot, and allegedly sexually abused the child again. The suspect is accused of continuing to meet and sexually abuse the girl until she was 17 years old. The suspect allegedly tried to conceal their communications by instructing the girl t use Wi-Fi connection, delete messages, and avoid cell network connection to avoid creating a history of cellphone records. The girl reported the abuse to Cherry Hill police in June 2019. The girl is now 19-years-old, and she allowed the police to check her phone records, which built the case against the suspect, according to court documents.
The suspect's home was raided, and law enforcement agents discovered a sexually explicit video and several images of the victim all the way back to when she was 14 years old. The suspect faces several felony charges, including enticement of a minor to travel for illicit sexual conduct, the manufacture of child pornography, use of interstate commerce to entice a minor, and travel with the intent to engage in illegal sexual conduct a minor. The suspect, if found guilty, could receive life in prison.