Winter Haven High School athletic director arrested - FOX 13 News

Winter Haven High School athletic director arrested

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WINTER HAVEN (FOX 13) -

The athletic director of Winter Haven High School was arrested Thursday and charged with sexual battery.

Steven Lamar Beasley, 51, is charged with sexual battery and attempted sexual battery.

According to the Winter Haven Police Department, Beasley groped two women during an event at Lake Howard on July 27.

Investigators say the incidents happened in the lake. They say Beasley approached the first victim, started hugging her and then put his hand down her bathing suit.

She pushed him away and swam off, detectives said.

Then the second victim, who Beasley was acquainted with, approached him, asking for help finding her friends. Police say he also put his hand down the second victim's bathing suit.

He is being held in the Polk County Jail without bond.

When the students at Winter Haven High School return to class Monday, they will do so without their athletic director.

"Today we arrested the athletic director at Winter Haven High School Steven Beasley. That stemmed from an incident that took place at a community event that's referred to as the flotilla," said Winter Haven Police Chief Gary Hester.

The details surrounding that arrest and what's believed to be the motive behind Beasley's alleged actions will make for some "R" rated gossip in the school's hallways.

Police say Beasley crossed the line with two women at the Flotilla that took place on Lake Howard in late July.

"Beasley is accused of placing his hand inside of the bathing suit bottom of the two victims," said Hester.

One of the victims is said to be an employee at the school; the other a former student.

Both women were able to get away from Beasley but not before he allegedly made an offer to the former student.

Police say despite the large crowd attending the flotilla, no one actually saw the attacks because they happened under water.

One man did see Beasley with one of the victims, but not the alleged attack.

Despite these charges, students at Winter Haven High who know Beasley say he couldn't have done this.

"We know Mr. Beasley personally and I don't think he would," said Winter Haven High School senior Lynsey Putney.

"He's probably the nicest guy ever," said Winter Haven High School senior Madison Speyerer.

Police stand by the victims' stories and say at this point, there's no evidence of any misconduct by Beasley at the school.

That's a relief for parents who are worried by all of this.

"It's kinda scary to have stuff like that going on with your kids in the hands of people we're supposed to trust," said Albert Reynolds, father of a 14 year old freshman at Winter Haven High.

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