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Sex offender from Tampa charged with sexual battery on teen

TAMPA — A 40-year-old registered sex offender is in custody, charged with sexual battery against a teenage girl. And authorities say there may be more victims.

John Christopher Knight of 1518 E Third Ave. in Tampa was arrested Wednesday night after three teen girls said they were drugged at his house when they consumed drinks he gave them.

The girls had traveled from Lee County for an event on Aug. 15, according to a Tampa police news release. Knight befriended the girls and invited them back to his house.

One girl woke up with no clothes on. Another told police she had a vague memory of Knight removing her pants.

When the girls got home, the 16-year-old told her mother what had happened. She was taken to a hospital, where doctors confirmed she had been sexually assaulted. A blood test indicated the girl had benzodiazepine, a "date rape drug," in her system, police said.

Detectives said they are awaiting test results from the other two teenagers and additional charges are pending.

Knight, who was released from prison in April after serving time on drug charges, was charged with an additional count of sexual battery, police said, for a July incident involving a 24-year-old woman who also tested positive for the date rape drug.

Anyone with additional information or who has had contact with Knight is asked to contact the Tampa Police Department.

Times staff

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