Vasquez ain’t gonna pitch his way outta this spot!
Pittsburgh Pirates closer Felipe Vazquez faces multiple felony charges in Florida and Pennsylvania for allegedly having sex with a 13-year-old girl whom he met at PNC Park
The first set of charges are from Lee County, Florida. Vazquez on Tuesday was charged with using computer pornography to solicit a child for sex and providing obscene material to minors. The charges reflect a multi-state law enforcement operation involving officers from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Pennsylvania State Police. They executed a search warrant at Vazquez’s apartment in Pittsburgh on Tuesday morning. The officers seized several electronic devices from the residence. Shortly thereafter, Vazquez was arrested and booked at the Allegheny County Jail. He will soon be arraigned and faces eventual extradition to Lee County.
According to a statement released by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the police investigation into Vazquez started last month. At that time, officers learned that two years ago, Vazquez had engaged in sexual acts with a 13-year-old girl who resides in Lee County. This pattern of sexual conduct continued, with the victim and Vazquez texting one another and using video to record their sexual acts. Apparently, Vazquez texted her with plans to meet for sex after the Pirates season ended.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports the victim told police she initially met Vazquez while he was in the bullpen at PNC Park. The two then exchanged texts and other electronic messages.
Vazquez’s legal situation worsened late Tuesday when, according to WTAE.com, he was charged in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, with four additional crimes: statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, corruption of minors, and misdemeanor indecent assault of a person less than 16 years old.
Prosecutors in Florida and Pennsylvania will likely coordinate the timing of their separate, but connected, prosecutions of Vazquez. As discussed below, MLB has placed Vazquez on administrative leave. He will remain away from the team for the foreseeable future.