A man arrested last month for allegedly molesting a child at the Magic Kingdom is now facing additional charges for allegedly molesting additional children around Walt Disney World, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
50 year-old James Anthony Jones, of Orange County, Florida, was arrested October 17th for allegedly molesting two children at the Magic Kingdom’s Ye Olde Christmas Shoppe the day before. According to the Orange County Sherriff’s Office, Jones has been connected to two additional incidents: an alleged molestation of 13-year-old girl at Disney’s Animal Kingdom on September 15th and of a 14-year-old girl at the Magic Kingdom on July 12th. Jones has been charged with six counts of lewd or lascivious molestation.
The Sentinel‘s Jeff Weiner described the alleged incidents:
According to arrest paperwork, the July 12 incident happened on the Haunted Mansion ride. The 14-year-old said she was in the part of the ride known as the “stretching room” — a room that seems to elongate upward, revealing frightening images — when a man rubbed his elbow against her breast.
The girl said she thought it was an accident, but the man then rubbed her thighs, private area and buttocks. Deputies at the time were unable to identify a suspect.
In the Sept. 16 incident, the 13-year-old girl was waiting to board the Avatar Flight of Passage simulator when she said she passed a man, who touched her right breast with his hand. She, too, initially thought it was an accident — until, she said, he groped her when the ride ended.
As they exited the ride, the girl said the man placed both of his hands on her breasts as he walked by, then brushed her again with the back of his hand after they passed through the exit hallway.
The girl said she cried out — “Dude, you touched me three times!” — and the man walked away, according to the report.
Authorities didn’t identify Jones as the groper until he was accused of grabbing a girl’s breast as he walked past her inside the Ye Olde Christmas Shop at Magic Kingdom about 6:15 p.m. Oct. 16. The girl immediately told her mother, who reported the incident to guest relations.
Sheriff’s investigators arrived and worked with Disney Security to find footage of the incident. While investigators were still working to identify Jones, another similar attack was reported about 8 p.m. at the Haunted Mansion attraction, according to an arrest report.
A girl told investigators a man had reached down and touched her private area over her clothing, also while in the “stretching room” area of the ride.
After groping her, the girl said the man boarded the ride. She told her mother.
The ages of the two girls molested Oct. 16 were redacted from arrest paperwork, but the charges against Jones indicate that one was younger than 12, while the other was between 12 and 15.
Disney security spotted Jones, who matched the description from the incident at Ye Olde Christmas Shop.
In an interview with sheriff’s investigators, Jones listed rides and shops he had visited that day, omitting the Christmas store and Haunted Mansion ride. But, when shown a still image of the first groping — which deputies had zoomed in, so that Jones could not see that the image showed his hand “about an inch” from the girl’s breast — he admitted that he was the man in the photo, the report said.
When investigators began to question Jones about the Haunted Mansion ride, he admitted he had been on the ride, but soon asked for a lawyer, according to the report. Deputies noted Jones, who described himself as an annual pass holder, had made two purchases that day: a stuffed Piglet toy and candy.
Deputies checked his pass history and discovered he had been at the park July 12, helping them tie him to the attack that day.
They found photos of him on the ride at the same time as the victim, an arrest report said.
Deputies also called the mother of the girl molested Sept. 15, who had reported the abuse to Disney security the following day. The mother said she had seen Jones’ Oct. 17 arrest on the news and recognized him as the man who had molested her daughter at Animal Kingdom, records show.
Jones is being held without bail at the Orange County Jail. The sheriff’s office is currently asking any additional victims to come forward, saying in a statement, “Detectives are interested in speaking with anyone who feels they may have been victimized by Jones.”
We will provide updates as the story develops.