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Casey Dickerson, Fla. man, participated in gang rape of teen girl on cruise ship, feds say


(CBS) ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - Florida man Casey Dickerson was arrested Monday after an FBI investigation accused him of participating in the gang rape of a 15-year-old girl while onboard a Carnival cruise ship last weekend, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

Dickerson, 31, was arrested on a federal sex charge after the FBI alleged that he and several teenage boys had forcible sex with the girl on Sunday in Dickerson's cabin on the Carnival Sensation. A judge ordered Dickerson to be held at the Orange County Jail until his trial.

The other boys, who remain unidentified, admitted to having sex with the girl but have not been charged, the Sentinel reported. Federal prosecutors must seek permission from the Attorney General in order to file charges against juveniles. The U.S. Attorney's Office is continuing to review the case, a spokeswoman said.

Dickerson and his wife were on the cruise, which left from Port Canaveral on Aug. 16, according to a criminal complaint. The couple was given a second cabin after complaining about a noise issue with their first room, but was allowed to keep both cabins.

Federal prosecutors said the teenage victim told FBI agents that she and another 15-year-old friend went to Dickerson's cabin with him and four other boys.

Once in the cabin, Dickerson and the boys held her down and took turns having sex with her, the girl said, according to the complaint. The victim's friend was allegedly being held in the bathroom by one of the boys.

The girl said someone knocked on the door while she was being attacked and one of the boys answered it. Dickerson and the boys continued their sexual attack when the person left, according to the complaint.

After they were done, one of the suspected attackers dressed the girl and her teenage friend was allowed out of the bathroom, the Sentinel reported. The victim received medical treatment on the ship for her injuries.

When FBI agents questioned the boys allegedly involved in the attack, the boys said Dickerson gave alcohol to the victim and her friend, inebriating the victim to the point that she could not resist the attacks.

Dickerson told the agents he was drunk and didn't know when anything got "sexual." He said he had sex with other women on the cruise who were not his wife, but he was not sure if the teenage girl was one of the women he had sex with.

Dickerson said he passed out and did not have sex with the girl, the Sentinel reported.

Carnival issued a statement Wednesday, saying company officials immediately contacted the FBI when they learned about the attack.

"Carnival is fully cooperating with law enforcement officials as the investigation continues," the statement read.

FBI Special Agent Dave Couvertier said that even during vacations, parents must keep their children's safety in mind no matter how many security measures are in place. Children who are unsupervised are prime targets for victimization, he said.

"Whether at a sporting event, theme park, or a on a cruise, you need to be aware that there are hundreds of people from all walks of life participating in the related activity ... This could include thieves, con men, and even child predators," Couvertier said. "Families should fully enjoy their vacations, but should never have a false sense of security."

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