Felipe Vazquez, the Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher arrested earlier this week for allegedly soliciting a child, admitted to authorities that he exchanged inappropriate photos and videos with the girl and tried to have sex with her, police claim.
Vazquez, 28, was arrested in Pittsburgh on Tuesday on one count each of “computer pornography — solicitation of a child” and “providing obscene material to minors,” the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said in a statement. However, he has since been hit with even more charges in Pennsylvania, including a misdemeanor charge of indecent assault of a person less than 16 years old, and three felonies: statutory sexual assault of a minor 11 years or older, unlawful contact with a minor, and corruption of minors, ESPN reports.
The FDLE said in its statement that it launched an investigation into Vazquez after receiving a tip suggesting that he’d had sexual contact with a 13-year-old girl. He allegedly recently sent the child a video of himself in the midst of performing a sex act in July.
Police have since said that the Venezuelan-born ball player has admitted to behaving inappropriately with the girl in a variety of ways.
After first meeting the girl at Pittsburgh’s PNC Park, police said that Vazquez “claimed initially that he refused to communicate with her due to her age,” because she appeared to be around 16 years old, if not younger, ESPN reports, citing a criminal complaint. However, that didn’t last long, and the two began to communicate, eventually trading photos and videos of themselves in the nude, despite the child victim being only 13 years old, according to the outlet.
Vazquez also is alleged to have admitted to driving to the girl’s home in Scottdale, Pennsylvania for an encounter. The August 2017 meeting took place in a car parked at the end of the driveway of the girl’s home, according to CNN. Vazquez told authorities that what happened was “sex but not really” because “he could not fit his penis entirely into the Victim's vagina,” the complaint reads. The child told police that Vazquez stopped trying, while he told police that he told the girl that he needed to leave to play in a game scheduled for that night, the outlet reports.
A complaint filed in Lee County, Florida states that the child’s mother was first made aware of Vazquez’s relationship with her daughter when she saw inappropriate photos and videos, as well as text messages, from Vazquez on the child’s phone in July, according to CNN.
“I can't wait to see you during the off-season,” one reportedly read.
Vazquez, who was denied bail during his arraignment on Tuesday, is facing charges in both Pennsylvania and Florida, the latter the state he lives in during the off-season, according to ESPN.
Pennsylvania State Police spokesman Stephen Liman told CNN that the charges in Pennsylvania, which include multiple felonies, will take precedence.
Following news of his arrest, Major League Baseball placed Vazquez on administrative leave, according to ESPN.
In a statement to CNN, Vazquez's lawyers, Jay K. Reisinger and Michael A. Comber, were brief when discussing their client, who has not yet entered a plea.
“We are in the process of reviewing both the Pennsylvania and Florida charging documents, as well as the underlying facts of the matter,” their statement reads. “At this time, any comment would be premature.”
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