OCALA, Fla. – Former NBA All-Star Eddie Johnson has been arrested and charged with sexually assaulting an 8-year-old girl, authorities said Tuesday night.
Johnson, 51, was charged Tuesday with sexual battery on a child under the age of 12 and residential burglary for entering the apartment where the girl was staying while her mother was out, said Sgt. Russ Kern of the Ocala police department.
Johnson was being held without bond at the Marion County jail. It was not immediately known if he was represented by an attorney.
The girl and her three brothers were staying in the apartment while their mother registered them at school, according to a police report. Johnson walked into the apartment uninvited and told the girl's 6-year-old brother to lock the door, police said.
The girl told detectives Johnson ordered her into a bedroom, where he sexually assaulted her, according to the police report. He then told her "not to tell anyone about what just happened," and tried to kiss her in the kitchen before leaving the apartment, the report stated.
She told her mother about the alleged assault when the woman returned to the apartment, police said. The girl's mother told detectives she knew Johnson from the neighborhood, but he had never had permission to be in her home.
Johnson was arrested in a field near the apartment building. He told detectives he had been in the apartment with the children, who were jumping on the bed.
He also told detectives he kissed the girl on the head, which he does all the neighborhood children "as a friendly gesture," according to the police report.
Since 1989, online Marion County court records show Johnson has had numerous convictions: burglary, battery, robbery, marijuana possession, possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting arrest, along with a charge last month of battery on a law enforcement officer and resisting or obstructing an officer without violence, the Ocala Star-Banner reported for Wednesday's editions.
Johnson, a 6-foot-2 guard from Auburn University, played in the NBA from 1977-1987 with the Atlanta Hawks, Cleveland Cavaliers and Seattle SuperSonics. He represented the Hawks in the 1980 and 1981 NBA All-Star games and scored 10,163 points in his career.