Two preteen boys were arrested in June after police say they raped an 11-year-old girl in Boynton Beach, according to a recently released report.
The boys, whose names are redacted from the report, face charges of sexual battery. Police say they are 11 and 12 years old. It’s unclear when the boys were arrested, but police began investigating the case in May, according to the report. Because the boys are juveniles, information about the case is limited.
It has not been determined whether the boys will be charged as adults, but that might be unlikely because of their ages.
Before spring break this school year, a preteen girl, whose name is removed from the report, was playing outside a Boynton Beach home when the two boys approached her. They asked to have sex with her and she said no, according to the report.
When she refused, they said they would beat her up, investigators said. Then, one of the boys grabbed her by the arm and pushed her near a vacant home where he and the other boy took turns raping her, the girl told police.
After spring break, she said one of the boys threatened her again in the same area and raped her again. The girl said when he left, the boy told her that if she told anyone what happened, he would “shoot her house up,” according to the report.
She told police that another boy witnessed the assaults but did not rape her. When police spoke to him, he said he did not witness the assaults, but heard the boys threaten the girl.
When the accused boys were interviewed, one boy said he and the other did have sex with the girl, but that he did not threaten her. The other alleged said “(redacted) did a bad thing,” but his mother ended the interview with police upon further questioning, according to the report.
Police became aware of the case when the girl wrote a note to the staff at an unknown school. Investigators said an interview with the girl and a state Child Protection Team “came back as positive for signs of sexual abuse.” The team conducts forensic interviews and exams for children who have been sexually or physically abused.
The age of sexual consent in Florida is 18. No one under the age of 16 can give consent under any circumstances, according to Florida statutes.
Except in rare cases, juveniles under 14 are not prosecuted as adults in Palm Beach County unless they are accused of crimes punishable by life in prison, according to Mike Edmondson, spokesman for the State Attorney’s Office.
A person younger than 18 years of age who is convicted of sexual battery against a victim younger than 12 is eligible for a life sentence under Florida law.
The state attorney has 21 days to file adult charges but can receive court-ordered extensions, Edmondson said. The exact date of the boys’ arrest was not available.
Edmondson did not address the case involving the boys, but said prosecutors weigh the age of juvenile defendants before moving forward on adult charges.
“The younger a defendant is, the more generally the case will be kept in juvenile court,” Edmondson said. “We have had cases involving juveniles as young as 7 or 8 years old who have committed crimes – suffocated a sibling – that generally in this circuit has stayed in juvenile court.
“When you are dealing with children at that age, that are acting out and committing serious crimes, they’re generally indicators that there is something else going on in their lives.”
Preteen boys arrested for allegedly raping girl, 11, in Boynton
Palm Beach Post July 11, 2017