A 27 year old man stands accused of sexually molesting an eleven year old girl at the Jungle Club Sports Complex in Vero Beach, Florida. The accusation is that he improperly touched the girl. The owner and employees at the club and it’s employees are defending Erick Bello strenuously either because they do not think he’s capable of such a thing or because he is an illegal alien and faces deportation if convicted.
Bello was arrested and charged with lewd or lascivious molestation on a child younger than 12 by someone 18 or older.
A police report says that the victim charged that Bello began inappropriately touching her in an enclosed room when the two were alone. The accused initially denied he was alone with the girl but later changed his story and admitted that he was alone with her but claimed he did not touch her, police added.
During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that Bello is not in the U.S. legally and has been using a stolen Social Security number for his employment at the facility.
John Cairns, owner of the Jungle Club, was shocked by the incident.
“He is an individual that, in my personal opinion, would never have done this,” Cairns told the media. “We are still investigating, and we’re never going to say never, but we have to make sure we have open arms and open eyes.”
“We’re all very upset with this,” Cairns added. “Erick is kind of a family member.”
Staff members of the Jungle Club told the media that they doubt any molestation occurred.
“Eric startled this young lady,” the club owner insisted, “and apparently they just passed each other on the stairs.”
Cairns said he is standing by his employee until more proof is offered.
“This young man has worked for us for a number of years. He has been the best employee that we could ever ask for. So we are standing behind this employee,” Cairns told CBS 12.
Cairns also disputed the notion that his facility is somehow unsafe for children.
“I can honestly say this is one of the safest places that I would ever send my children,” he said.
Police, though, are asking for any other possible victims to come forward.