Two unnamed people have come forward alleging that the assistant to the tax collector of Santa Rosa County, Edward Collinsworth, allegedly sexually assaulted them over three decades ago.
One of the alleged victims claimed that the recent new coverage of the Jerry Sandusky trial on television urged him to come forward to tell Santa Rosa County deputies about the alleged crime according to a Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s arrest report.
Sandusky, the Penn State defensive coordinator was recently found guilty of 45 counts of child molestation and sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison.
The two people claim that Collinsworth, 45, sexually assaulted them from 1979 to 1986 when they lived in Santa Rosa County.
Collinsworth is currently in Santa Rosa County Jail without bond after being booked on ten counts of sexual assault on a victim under 12 years of age. According to the arrest report, Collinsworth was promoted to Assistant to the Tax Collector the day of his arrest. He has worked at the office since September 27.
According to the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office report, one of the alleged victims stated that Collinsworth sexually assaulted him or her when they were 5 or 6 years of age. At the time of the abuse, the alleged victim stated that Collinsworth lived across the street from him or her.
At the time, the alleged victim stated that they thought Collinsworth was 18 or 19. The victim indicated that they were abused from the time they were 5 years old to 12 years old by the suspect.
According to the report, the first alleged victim stated that Collinsworth allegedly assaulted him or her in his tool shed behind his house. The report indicated that Collinsworth allegedly tied him or her to a chair and performed indecent acts on the victim.
The report alleged that the victim would ask Collinsworth to stop, but the suspect threatened to hit the victim with a baseball bat.
The alleged victim alleged that they were sexually abused by Collinsworth until they were 12 at least 100 times according to the report.
Another person also came to Santa Rosa deputies about allegedly being sexually abused by Collinsworth almost three decased ago back in September. The victim alleged that they were abused by Collinsworth when suspect was believed to have been around 14 years of age. The victim alleged that the suspect sexually abused them 50 times or more.
The victim stated in the report that Collinsworth would bring them into his bedroom and sexually molest them. The alleged victim stated that Collinsworth would ask them to engage in the sexual act with him, but they refused.
The second alleged victim stated that they never came to law enforcement officers about the abuse because they didn’t think they would believe them.
According to Victoria McCool, a human resource officer at the tax collector’s office, Collinsworth is still employed at the Tax Collector’s office as of press time on Thursday.