OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. - A 15-year-old boy was arrested on charges of sexual battery on two children, according to the Osceola County Sheriff's Office.
Pablo Rivera was charged with 50 counts of capital sexual battery and violation of probation, detectives said. The violation of probation charge was for previously possessing marijuana, investigators said.
Rivera’s mother was in court with him on Thursday.
He mouthed the words “I love you” to her minutes before she stormed out of the courtroom.
She told WFTV her son is innocent.
The investigation began July 22 when deputies said they spoke with a grandmother who told them her 6-and 7-year-old granddaughters may have been sexually battered by Rivera, who was baby-sitting the children.
“According to the victims this had happened on multiple occasions over the course of the year. He’s been watching them since last June,” said Twis Lizasuain with the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office.
Authorities said the 6-year-old victim told detectives Rivera inappropriately touched her, and based on her description of what occurred, also sexually battered her multiple times over the past year.
Detectives said Rivera told the victims not to tell anyone about the incidents, and sometimes threatened them with violence.
“He did threaten to harm one of the girls if she told anyone about the incidents,” Lizasuain said.
One of the victims told authorities he forced her to smoke.
While detectives said he didn’t confess to the crimes, he did admit to certain inappropriate behavior while with the two girls.
Based on the victim's statements, Rivera was arrested and booked into the Orange County Juvenile Detention Center.
While he’s facing life in prison, WFTV’s legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said the likelihood of that happening are unlikely because of Rivera’s young age.
It still hasn’t been decided if he is going to be charged as a juvenile or an adult, but either way, Sheaffer said his lawyers will likely be looking for a plea deal where Rivera would instead be labeled as a sex offender and must go through mandatory therapy.