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St. Johns County man accused of raping young girl

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – A 58-year-old St. Johns County man was arrested Monday night on a charge of capital sexual battery.

The Sheriff's Office said the investigation began Saturday when the mother of a girl under the age of 8 reported finding her in bed with 58-year-old Ronnie Milton.  

The girl told her mother that Milton forced himself on her sexually several times while he lived with the family. She called police and the Florida Department of Children and Families.

Deputies and DCF investigators interviewed Milton on Monday, and he was arrested and booked into the county jail. Milton made his first appearance before a judge Tuesday morning and was ordered held on $100,000 bond.

Deputies said Milton was a friend of the victim's family and had been staying at their house. Court records show he had just been evicted.

"As you know, sexual battery victims, we are very protective of that, and we don't really apologize for that, but, of course, as the victims are younger and younger, we also take great sensitivity in protecting them, but nothing that we can share with you will tell you how this individual came in contact with this child or where any of the offenses occurred," SJCSO Cmdr. Chuck Mulligan said.

Deputies said the victim is with her family.

"The child has never been removed from her family. The family was not an issue in this particular case, so the child is with those who love her," Mulligan said. "We would encourage children (that) if anything were to happen to them that they feel is inappropriate, the people that you should go to first and foremost are those individuals who you feel loved by, who you feel secure and safe with, and share that information with those individuals because they do care about you and there's nothing that you can tell them that they won't want to help you."