BY JENNIFER CABRERA
NEWBERRY, Fla. – Michael Wayne Bryant, 48, was arrested last night and charged with lewd and lascivious battery on a 15-year-old girl.
On November 26, Bryant allegedly became intoxicated and wanted to drive somewhere, so the girl offered to drive him so he would not drive while intoxicated. At some point, the girl ended up in the passenger seat, with Bryant driving, and Bryant allegedly began trying to persuade the girl to run away with him to Dixie County, where he has a hunting lease. He then allegedly touched her inappropriately, but she pushed his hand away.
The victim reportedly convinced Bryant to switch seats so she could drive, and she drove to Bryant’s parents’ residence, where she got out of the car and hid. She contacted another person, who came to get her.
Post Miranda, Bryant reportedly said he was alone with the girl in the car but denied being intoxicated. He denied ever touching the girl.
Bryant has three misdemeanor convictions for theft, battery, and driving without a valid license. According to a spokesman at the State Attorney’s Office, Judge Thomas Jaworski set bail at $10,000.
Articles about arrests are based on reports from law enforcement agencies. The charges listed are taken from the arrest report and/or court records and are only accusations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.