Valparaiso Police confirmed the arrest of 19-year-old Hunter James Lovin of Valparaiso for felony sexual assault.
Lovin, of Valparaiso, was taken into custody on June 10th.
According to the police affidavit, the alleged crime took place on May 17th after a party to celebrate the promotion of one of Lovin’s friends. Lovin and the alleged victim knew each other prior to the party that night – according to the police report.
The victim, a 19-year-old female, said Lovin provided alcohol to the party. She told investigators she had “at least five beers” and “two large swigs” of Fireball whisky – according to the police document.
According to the arrest report – the next thing the defendant remembers – she woke up in Lovin’s bed.
Several days later, Lovin and the alleged victim met in the Bass Pro Shop store parking lot in Destin, Florida to talk about what had happened. The alleged victim took two friends with her to the conversation. While in the parking lot – the alleged victim told Lovin she was setting a clear boundary that they should only be friends. She then told Lovin that she had reported the incident to the police. The police report says, “The victim stated that her parents and close friends ‘pushed’ her to report the incident and that she believes taking action about situations like this could potentially save another girl from going through this.”
Valparaiso Police referenced two separate witness statements in the arrest affidavit: one from Lovin’s cousin and another from the co-worker whose promotion the group was celebrating.
According to both witnesses, the victim was too drunk to consent at the time of the alleged incident. “Witness 1 stated that he observed the victim stumbling a lot to the point where the defendant was helping her walk because she had fallen onto the cooler on the back porch while getting out of the pool.”
Several days after the incident, Lovin allegedly told his cousin – known in the sworn statement as “Witness 2” that he had sex with the victim. Lovin then allegedly told the witness he would no longer hang out with the victim “because of how awkward it was.” Lovin then told his cousin (Witness 2)that he should not tell anyone else about the incident.
After hearing from the two witnesses and the victim, the investigator on the case – Craig Toney interviewed Lovin at the Valparaiso Police Department on June 6th.
He asked the defendant to explain what happened.
According to Lovin’s statement – the incident was a consensual one. He told investigator Toney that he had asked for consent “approximately 100 times”.
At that point – Investigator Toney asked Lovin how the night started. Lovin then asked for his attorney.
The Okaloosa County Jail released Lovin on a $10,000 bond. Lovin’s first court date to answer the charges is July 14th. The court date is at 330PM in the Fort Walton Beach Courthouse Annex Building on Lewis Turner Boulevard
If you or someone you care about has experienced sexual assault – there are many local and national resources to use in order to get help.
The National Sexual Assault Hotline is 1.800.656.4673
You can also go to their website – rainn.org