Man groped girl at arcade on Daytona Beach boardwalk, police say

John Griffith arrested near Mardi Gras

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - A 48-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of groping a 10-year-old girl at an arcade on the Daytona Beach boardwalk.

John Griffith was arrested Saturday night on charges of lewd and lascivious molestation and resisting an officer without violence.

According to Daytona Beach police, the girl was waiting her turn to play a game at Mardi Gras when Griffith approached her from behind, ran his hand down her back and grabbed her buttocks.

The girl alerted her mother, who, along with a worker, escorted Griffith out of the arcade and flagged down a police officer, according to officials.

Police said Griffith pulled away from the officer, who then detained him.

A witness told police she saw Griffith molest the 10-year-old and another girl, who was not located by authorities.

The incident with the second girl was caught on surveillance, but police say they have not been able to identify her. They say the video shows Griffith touching her and then waving money at her to entice her further.

Police urged any other potential victims to call authorities.

Police said Griffith has previously been arrested on six felony charges but was not convicted in any of the cases.  He has been convicted on six misdemeanor charges, but none involved sex crimes, police said.

Griffifth is being held in the Volusia County jail on $21,000 bond.

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