A Florida man charged with raping an 8-year-old girl blamed what he did on the girl wearing provocative clothing, authorities said.
Deputies in Marion County arrested Sydney Allan Markland, 68, on a charge of sexual battery. They said Markland asked the girl, who lives in his neighborhood, to help him carry some chicken into his home. While inside, Markland raped the girl and ordered her not to tell anyone, deputies said.
The girl told a parent, who called authorities. Lab tests showed Markland's DNA was on the girl's clothing, deputies said.
Detectives interviewed Markland, who goes by the nickname "Dread," at that point. He told them that the girl "came into his house wearing provocative clothing and . . . her 'actions' suggested that she was consenting to sexual contact," states a news release from the Marion County Sheriff's Office.
Markland was arrested on multiple child sex charges and is being held without bail. Detectives believe there could be more victims and say anyone with information can call Crime Stoppers of Marion County at 352-368-STOP.