SANTA ROSA COUNTY, Fla. (WKRG) — A Pace man was arrested after allegedly sexually assaulting a victim under 12-years-old, according to the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office.
Dawson Andrew Cole Roper, 21, was charged with sexual assault by a person older than 18 on a victim under 12-years-old.
According to the arrest report, which was heavily redacted to protect the victim’s identity, Roper resided at a home in Santa Rosa County with the alleged victims. According to the report, the way the living arrangements appeared is everyone living as a family unit. Deputies said the sleeping situation was “not the best” and depending on who was at the residence would determine if someone slept on the pull-out couch.
Deputies said on Nov. 28, 2022, a person received a message on Facebook messenger from Roper’s ex-girlfriend, concerned Roper “messed with your [redacted.]” According to the arrest report, the victim told the person “Uncle Dawson” began touching the victim a few weeks after he moved in with them. The report said Roper started in the bedroom, then moved to the couch coaxing the victim and rubbing the victim’s rear. The report goes on to say Roper would pull down the victim’s underwear and penetrate them. The victim said it would hurt and Roper would stop.
On Dec. 5, 2022, investigators interviewed a person and explained they couldn’t tell Roper’s relationship to the family, but “he was somehow related to [redacted].” The report said Roper would baby sit the victim at times and would make the victim lay down on the couch beside him.
The report said Roper has told the victim if she told anyone he would hurt [redacted] or [redacted]’s dog.
Deputies said they reached out to Roper and scheduled an interview for Jan. 27, 2023, but they said Roper did not show for his scheduled interview, nor did he call prior to reschedule.
Roper was booked into the Santa Rosa County Jail being held without bond.