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Manatee County man lured girl, 5, from birthday party to sexually abuse her

Manatee County Sheriff’s Office deputies believe there are more victims after they found child pornography in the man’s home, a news release states.
Christopher L. Thompson, 44, of Palmetto, is facing multiple child sex abuse charges.
Christopher L. Thompson, 44, of Palmetto, is facing multiple child sex abuse charges. [ Manatee County Sheriff's Office ]
Published Apr. 26

A Manatee County man has been arrested on charges that he lured a 5-year-old girl from a birthday party to his home, where he sexually abused her, the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office reported Tuesday.

Christopher L. Thompson, 44, of Palmetto, was arrested on multiple charges after the girl’s parents called deputies, who say they also found evidence that Thompson had “committed lewd and lascivious acts on multiple young females,” according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.

The parents called deputies on Sunday and said their daughter “had been sexually battered while attending a friend’s birthday party earlier in the day,” the news release states. Deputies launched an investigation and learned that Thompson had been at the party and lured the girl across the street to his house, where he sexually abused her, then told her not to tell anyone and went back to the party, the agency said.

Deputies also learned that Thompson had forced the girl to watch “sexual material involving children and an adult male,” the news release states.

Deputies got a search warrant for Thompson’s home, at which point neighbors started “voicing concern for their own children,” the agency said. Deputies removed a “significant amount of electronics” from the home, including images of child pornography, the sheriff’s office said.

Thompson was arrested on charges of capital sexual battery, exposing minors to harmful images and production and possession of child pornography. More charges are expected, the sheriff’s office said, and the case remains under investigation.

Detectives believe there could be more victims and are encouraging anyone with information to call the agency at (941) 747-3011.

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