PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — A Pensacola man is in jail after a pastor turned him into authorities for child sexual assault.
Robert Cota, 31, is charged with 600 counts of sexual battery and 600 counts of incest.
A pastor said Cota went to his church’s new members’ event and Cota asked to speak to him at the end. He said the conversation was about the church guideline book pertaining to marriage, gender and sexual conduct. The pastor stated Cota had a problem with the word “incest.”
The pastor said he told Cota what he was doing is not right and that Cota needed to report himself to authorities. The pastor gave the sheriff’s office a sheet with Cota’s current address and phone number that he filled out while at the event.
Deputies located the victim and her mother at another address. The victim stated she had been “having sex” with Cota since she was seven years old. She estimated it happened 600 times over several years.
The victim’s mother said she caught Cota in bed with the victim in September and confronted him about it but he would “shut down and not answer any questions.”
Deputies got in contact with Cota and “Cota would still refer to him never physically abusing the victim,” according to the arrest report. Deputies say he would not make eye contact when being questioned and would start many answers with “I don’t know, no” and he talked very softly or laugh after a question was asked. He said he was not surprised to be accused of the actions.
Cota is being held in the Escambia County Jail with a $3 million bond.