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Crime & Courts

Hillsborough deputy accused of having sex with girl, 15

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Published:   |   Updated: March 20, 2013 at 10:32 PM

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TAMPA -

A Hillsborough County sheriff's deputy is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old girl.

William T. Best, 39, was arrested today by internal affairs detectives on charges of sexual battery and lewd and lascivious battery, the sheriff's office said.

He was being held without bail at the Orient Road Jail pending an initial court appearance Saturday.

Best, a 10-year veteran assigned to traffic patrol in southeast Hillsborough, has been suspended without pay pending termination.

Authorities said Best knows the girl's mother and knew the teen's age.

According to an arrest report, Best's relationship with the girl started in January and the pair exchanged inappropriate texts.

The investigation began after the teen's mother reported her suspicions about the relationship.

The alleged crimes happened at multiple locations in south Hillsborough. There's no evidence they occurred while Best was on-duty or that he used his job to intimidate the girl, the sheriff's office said.

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