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Police: Largo man sexually battered stroke victim

LARGO — A Largo man was charged Thursday with sexually battering an incapacitated stroke victim at a rehabilitation center.

Vincent Paolella, 70, has been charged with a felony count of sexual battery of a victim physically helpless to resist. He was being held at the Pinellas County Jail on $50,000 bail.

According to an arrest affidavit, Paolella, while a resident of a Largo rehabilitation center on Oct. 24, was witnessed by two employees sexually battering another resident. His alleged victim "suffered a severe stroke years ago and is not able to clearly communicate with others," the affidavit states, adding that she "was physically helpless to resist and would not have been able to give consent to the sexual act."

The name and address of the facility were withheld from court documents to avoid identifying the victim. Paolella admitted the offense to a police officer and said "he could not explain why he did it" and "he snapped and was embarrassed," the affidavit states.

It is unclear why almost six months passed between the alleged battery and the issuance of Paolella's arrest warrant this week. Largo police did not return calls Thursday.