Golfer accused of getting teen drunk on wine then raping her, deputies say

Craig Kearney, 24, arrested on sexual battery charge

By Adrienne Cutway - Web Editor

OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. - A man is accused of giving a teenage girl enough wine to make her black out and then raping her while she was too incapacitated to stop the attack, according to the Osceola County Sheriff's Office.

The 17-year-old victim said the attack happened in August, but she did not immediately report it until January because she was afraid.

"In these kinds of situations, victims are traumatized in different ways and handle it different ways, that's between the victim and family. It was a delayed reporting to (us), but as soon as we received the information, we were right on top of it investigating it," Maj. Jacob Ruiz, of the Osceola County Sheriff's Office, said.

The girl said that on Aug. 17, her parents were out of their Osceola County home, which meant she was alone with Craig Kearney, according to the report. The relationship between Kearney, the victim and her family is unclear.

Ruiz said Kearney is a professional golfer, but the exact nature of his employment was not immediately available.

Kearney and the victim bought facial masks and picked up food from Taco Bell then brought it home, deputies said.

The duo put on the facial masks and ate the food as they watched Netflix in Kearney's room, according to the affidavit. The victim recorded a Snapchat video of the two of them together, which she was later able to show to deputies.

Kearney then pulled three bottles of wine from a stash he had hidden in his room since the victim's parents did not allow alcohol in the house, the report said.

Kearney drank only one glass of the wine, but gave the victim several glasses, according to the affidavit.

After the victim was intoxicated to the point where she could barely walk, she attempted to go upstairs to her bedroom, but Kearney followed her, then forcibly undressed her and raped her, according to the report.

"It appears the subject, what he did was served the juvenile victim some wine, she became intoxicated and he took advantage of her and committed sexual battery on her," Ruiz said.

The victim said she was too intoxicated to move or fight Kearney off. She said she blacked out after the attack and woke up the next morning feeling sore all over her body.

The victim moved out of state with her family two days after the attack. She said she didn't communicate with Kearney at all and she didn't return the texts he sent her, including one that read, "So we aren't talking anymore," according to the report.

Deputies said they interviewed Kearney on Thursday and he denied the attack and said he didn't even get along with the victim. He had no explanation when deputies showed him the video of him and the victim using facial masks together, according to the affidavit.

Kearney, 24, of England, was arrested Thursday on a sexual battery charge.

During a court appearance Friday, a judge ordered that Kearney be held without bond and that he hire his own lawyer because he does not qualify to receive the services of a public defender.

"He's some kind of professional golfer, and what a shame -- young guy, 24 years old, looks like he had a bright future ahead of him," Ruiz said. "If that's their mentality, their criminal mindset to hurt children -- guess what? They do it to themselves and they deserve what they get."

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