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Man accused of raping teen was on parole for similar crime

ST. PETERSBURG — It was 2:30 a.m. Wednesday when the man offered to drive a 17-year-old girl who was walking to the motel where she was staying.

They went to his room at the Crystal Inn, 4600 34th St. S, to watch television, police said, and he sexually assaulted her.

The teenager had met the man before at a family gathering, police said. What she didn't know is that he had served 10 years in prison for a similar crime.

Craig Antonio Jackson, 50, was still completing his 20-year parole sentence when he was arrested Wednesday on charges of sexual battery and violation of parole. He was being held Wednesday in the Pinellas County Jail on $20,000 bail.

In 2001, he was arrested in St. Petersburg for sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl at a friend's home.

A judge recently granted him more lenient parole terms in March. Under the new terms, he shouldn't have been out between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

He had made a similar request in 2011, asking to get rid of his curfew altogether. He submitted character references from his employer and his church, hoping to work for a nighttime cleaning company.

That request was denied.