Meeting at Kingdom Hall Lands Man in Jail

Jehovah’s Witness Meeting Lands Man in Jail on Molestation Charges 

A Leesburg, Florida, news site reported on September 4, 2014 that police arrested a 35-year-old man accused of molesting a child that he met at a local Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Kingdom Hall.

Clermont resident Michael Robert Paigo was also accused of trading inappropriate texts and pictures with the child, an underaged girl. Charged with two counts of lewd and lascivious battery on a person between 12 and 16, Paigo was arrested and held at the Lake County jail Wednesday, September 3, 2014 pending bail of $10,000.

The arrest affidavit has the girl’s age and identity redacted, but it does show that she attends a local area high school. The affidavit indicates that Paigo and the young girl met at the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall in 2013. Later that year they began texting and calling each other. The affidavit reports that sometime during an interview with law enforcement, Paigo admitted to exchanging “inappropriate texting and pictures” with the girl.

The girl alleged that they “kissed and sexually touched each other” on two occasions. During a phone call secretly recorded by investigators, the accused allegedly refers to his “deep friendship feelings” for her. He is also reported to have stated “just talking about them things could put me in jail” and that they “shouldn’t be engaging in that stuff” if she wanted to be baptized.

Original photo and story credit: Daily Commercial, Leesburg, Florida

Reporter: Millard K. Ives, staff writer:

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