Crime

Sex offender in church van exposed himself to Scout, cops say. He blamed it on ‘an itch’

A convicted sex offender is accused of showing his privates to a Boy Scout while sitting in a church van, Holly Hills police say.

Johnathan Williams, 58, was arrested Monday and charged with lewd and lascivious exhibition of a minor in addition to violating his probation, according to the arrest report.

Police say they responded to an Ace Hardware in Holly Hills on Saturday to investigate a sexual offense involving a juvenile. There, a troop leader alleged seeing Williams park, quickly run inside and return to his van where he stared at the Boy Scouts for about 10 minutes as they collected donations.

Williams eventually called over a scout and handed him a dollar. This would’ve been a rather innocent transaction if Williams didn’t allow “his entire genital area to be exposed and observed” when he opened the door to hand over the money, the report says.

It didn’t end there.

Police subsequently reviewed the parking lot’s security footage, which showed Williams “actively masturbating for many minutes” prior to signaling to the boy, the report continues.

The surveillance video also allowed officers to trace the van to the Free Spirit Evangelistic Outreach Church in Daytona Beach, according to police. A church staffer confirmed their ownership of the van and that Williams drives it.

Investigators interviewed Williams on Monday, but were initially unable to connect the dots. The report says he admitted to purchasing keys at the hardware store but only waited in the parking lot because the van wouldn’t start. When asked why his genitals were out, Williams said “an itch” led him to examine the area for a rash.

Officers say Williams eventually confessed to masturbating, stating that he “fell off the wagon” and “got sexually excited” from watching the troop. Williams, who has been on probation since 1996 for a lewd molestation conviction, cannot have unsupervised contact with minors, according to the report.

Court records show Williams is being held in a Volusia County Jail on $30,000 bond.

C. Isaiah Smalls II is a reporter covering breaking and trending news for the Miami Herald. Previously, he worked for ESPN’s The Undefeated as part of their inaugural class of Rhoden Fellows. He is a graduate of both Columbia University and Morehouse College.
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