OVIEDO, Fla. - The Oviedo mayor's half-brother was arrested Tuesday in Seminole County on allegations of providing housing and transportation to an underage teen girl in exchange for sexual favors, deputies said.
Anthony Persampiere, 34, was arrested on a charge of sexual battery on a victim 16 or 17 years old.
According to the Seminole County Sheriff's Office, the teen informed a deputy last week that she provided sex favors to Persampiere, who owns a unit at Villas at Lakeside near Oviedo, in exchange for a place to stay and transportation whenever she needed it.
The girl said she stayed at Persampiere's home for three months and performed sex acts dozens of times, according to the Sheriff's Office.
SCSO spokesperson Bob Kealing said Persampiere took advantage of a vulnerable child.
"He's manipulating this child to be able to forge this illegal, sexual relationship and he took advantage of her vulnerability again and again and when that happens in our community, predators like that are going to be behind bars," Kealing said.
An investigator met Monday with Persampiere, who said he met the teen about two months ago and allowed her to stay with him, a sheriff's report stated. He said he never forced or coerced the girl to perform sex acts, according to officials.
"In the eyes of the law, a minor cannot give consent," Kealing said.
Persampiere said he was unsure of the girl's age, but he communicated with her mother about her whereabouts and well-being while she was with him, according to the sheriff's report.
Oviedo Mayor Dominic Persampiere, who is on vacation, released a statement to News 6.
"I am on vacation with my wife and haven’t heard the details of this yet, so I can’t comment on specifics. Anthony is my half-brother, who lives in his own home. Charges like this should be taken very seriously because our community standards dictate such. I’m in touch with my family about this matter and won’t be making any further comment. If you have any more questions, please address them to the Sheriffs Office or Anthony's attorney."
Persampiere was arrested and taken to jail. He was released early Wednesday after posting a $15,000 bond.
Copyright 2019 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.