Miami-Dade police officers arrested a cruise passenger from Indianapolis, Indiana last Friday on charges that he molested a teenage girl on a recent Carnival cruise, according to Miami’s local 10 News.

Police arrested Jason LeFavour, age 44, when the Carnival Conquest returned to PortMiami, on a charge of “lewd and lascivious molestation of a child.”

The Carnival Conquest operates short (three or four day) cruises to the Bahamas.

The local news stations report that LeFavour grabbed the “left buttocks” of the girl “with his hand” as he walked past the 13-year-old child on a lower deck “just before 9 p.m. Thursday.” During an interview with police, LeFavour told detectives “he did not remember his actions at the time of the incident due to him being intoxicated.”

As I have reported numerous times,  Carnival Cruise Line’s sexual assault rate is higher on a per capita basis than twenty-seven of the fifty states in the U.S. One-third of sexual assaults on cruise ships are committed against children. Much of the violence on Carnival cruise ships is due to the out of control alcohol which this cruise line serves on its twenty-six cruise ships. This case is an example of exactly that.

The fortunate thing about cruises departing from the state of Florida is that by statute, local law enforcement officers in Miami (Miami-Dade Police), Fort Lauderdale (Broward County Sheriff’s Office) and other law enforcements in port cities in Florida have jurisdiction to investigate crimes on cruise ships which call on Florida ports. State prosecutors also have authority to bring criminal charges against passengers and/or crew members, based on the results of the investigation of local law enforcement officials. In all states other other than Florida, only the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has authority to investigate crimes which occur on cruise ships. Unfortunately, the FBI is often reluctant to investigate crimes such as drunken bar fights and molestation of children which occur all too often on Carnival cruise ships.

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Image credit: Carnival Conquest –  NormanEinstein wikipedia / commons 3.0; Jason LeFavour – Local News 10 (Miami).