Man, 29, accused of teens' assault

He is in jail on sexual battery, assault and weapons charges.

Published February 24, 2007

TAMPA - William F. Tittle, a 29-year-old Tampa man with a lengthy criminal record, sexually assaulted two teenage girls Thursday, law enforcement agencies said.

Tampa police said Tittle assaulted a 13-year-old he knew in her Tampa apartment some time before 3:30 a.m. Thursday.

Then, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said, Tittle got into his white four-door Toyota and found a 16-year-old girl at a Tampa bus stop at about 9 a.m.

Tittle offered her a ride to school, sheriff's officials said. The girl accepted the ride after resistance, and Tittle drove her across the Gandy Bridge. He pulled into some mangroves on the south side of Gandy Beach, parked out of the roadway's view and sexually assaulted the victim at knifepoint, Pinellas and Tampa agencies said.

The girl was able to run out of the car to a nearby Corrections Department truck, where a work crew was cleaning up the beach. A corrections employee called police while Tittle fled in his car.

Pinellas deputies investigated and issued an arrest warrant. Pinellas sheriff's spokeswoman Cecilia Barreda said she didn't know if Tittle knew the victim.

Meanwhile in Tampa Thursday, police investigated the first sexual assault.

Officers arrested Tittle at a condominium complex in North Tampa. In jail records, he listed his address as 7009 Interbay Blvd., No. 202.

He remains in a Hillsborough County jail without bail charged with sexual battery of a minor, burglary of a dwelling with assault or battery, sexual battery using a deadly weapon and sexual battery.

Tittle, who listed laborer as his occupation, has been arrested at least 10 times, Florida Department of Law Enforcement Records show. He was charged with sexual assault in 2001, records show, but the disposition of that case is unclear.

Justin George can be reached at 813 226-3368 or jgeorge@sptimes.com.