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The brother-in-law of Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams has been arrested after he allegedly tried to hire a 16-year-old for sex and then assaulted her, according to police.
The Tampa Police Department said that 57-year-old Jimmie Gardner met the minor girl at about 1:43 a.m. and invited her to his room at the Renaissance Hotel at International Plaza.
Gardner allegedly offered to pay the 16-year-old for sex.
“The victim initially agreed but later told Gardner that she no longer wanted to engage and he became angry,” read a press release from police.
“Gardner advised the victim that she needed to leave his hotel room," police added. "The two got involved in a verbal altercation that escalated to a physical dispute after Gardner placed his hands around the victim’s neck, impeding her breathing. After the dispute, Gardner left the hotel room, and the victim called 911.”
When police arrived at the hotel, they said that Gardner had already left.
He reported to the police station and was arrested on charges of human trafficking for commercial sexual activity (victim less than 18), lewd or lascivious touching of minor 16 or 17 years of age by person 24 years of age or older, and a misdemeanor count of battery.
“Everyone is entitled to the presumption of innocence," read a statement from state attorney Suzy Lopez. "Our attorneys will prosecute this case as we would any other offender who is alleged to have committed these crimes. We take these charges very seriously."
Gardner works as a motivational speaker and is known for being drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 1984. He is also married to federal judge Leslie Abrams Gardner.
In 2020, left-wing billionaire George Soros donated a million dollars to Abrams' second campaign to win the Georgia governorship. Incumbent Republican Gov. Brian Kemp decisively defeated her in that election with 53% of the vote to Abrams' 46%.
Here's more about the arrest of Jimmie Gardner:
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Carlos Garcia is a staff writer for Blaze News.