Bradenton man accused of raping woman asleep on pool raft

jdeleon@bradenton.comNovember 22, 2013 


MANATEE -- A Bradenton man has been charged with sexual battery after investigators say he assaulted a woman asleep on a raft in the pool, according to the Manatee Sheriff's Office.

Raymond Michael Nelson, 25, was arrested at 10:15 a.m. Thursday and charged with sexual battery, according to an arrest report.

Nelson appeared before Manatee County Judge Mark Singer in a first appearance hearing on Friday afternoon.

Singer ordered bond set at $150,000, agreeing with the State Attorney's Office's request. The judge also ordered Nelson to be placed on supervised release if he is able to post bond. Conditions of his release would include no contact with the victim, an electronic monitoring device at his own expense, no alcohol consumption and a curfew of 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Nelson's mother was in the courtroom and spoke on his behalf.

"He has a good job," Linda Adams said. "He has been a good husband and father."

Nelson's criminal history includes petty theft, writing a worthless check and driving while under the influence.

Detectives say the rape occurred at about 7 p.m. Aug. 25 when Nelson and the victim were at the same pool party. Others at the party had left to go to the store for more party supplies.

Deputies were called to the home, but the victim said she couldn't describe what had happened because she was too upset and drunk. Nelson was found and told deputies that he merely saved her from drowning.

Nelson did provide detectives with a DNA sample. Later, detectives went to the victim's home, where she said she had been drinking and fell asleep on a raft in the pool. The victim woke up as the assault was in process, detectives said.

Detectives were notified by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement on Nov. 20 that DNA provided by Nelson matched that from evidence gathered following the rape. When confronted, detectives say, Nelson said that it had been consensual.

Jessica De Leon, law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 9041-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter@JDeLeon1012.