Homeless man accused of molesting 6-year-old girl at Florida hurricane shelter

Homeless man accused of molesting 6-year-old girl at Florida hurricane shelter

News Staff

A homeless man is accused of molesting a 6-year-old girl who was staying with her family at a Florida shelter in the wake of Hurricane Michael, police said.

The child was at Davidson Middle School, more than 100 miles from storm-battered Mexico Beach, when the alleged assault happened Wednesday, according to the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office.

John Stapleton, 60, who was arrested Thursday, allegedly touched the girl on the lower back, buttocks, breast and inner thigh underneath her clothes.

A woman told police she watched a live video of Stapleton touching the girl “in a lewd manner,” according to an arrest report.

Stapleton admitted to investigators that he groped the girl, and said she told him “it felt good,” police said.

The school is one of dozens of shelters that opened to house people living in the path of the deadly storm, which made landfall Wednesday as a Category 4 storm.

Stapleton, who is homeless but resides in Destin on the coast, was also staying at the shelter. He was charged with lewd and lascivious molestation of a victim under the age of 12 and was has been denied bond, according to Okaloosa Department of Corrections records.