Robert Lopicola, the buffed former star weatherman at WPTV Channel 5 and current manager at Boardwalk gay strip club in Fort Lauderdale, was arrested yesterday by U.S. Marshals for allegedly having sex with two underage teens, and taken to the Palm Beach County jail.
The charges: one count of unlawful sexual activity with certain minors, one count of lewd and lascivious battery, one count of computer pornography and child exploitation.
One case involves a then-15-year-old now living in Michigan, the other one a then-17-year-old teen from West Palm Beach. Both incidents date back to 2010. Both met Lopicola through Craigslist’s personals section.
Florida Statute 794.05(1) indicates that “a person 24 years of age or older who engages in sexual activity with a person 16 or 17 years of age commits a felony of the second degree.” As used in this section, “sexual activity” means oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another.
“He was our show and dance manager and a good employee. I can’t speak about his private life. I hope he’s vindicated,” said Victor Zepka, owner of Boardwalk.
Lopicola is expected in Palm Beach County court tomorrow morning.
These are the stories according to the two victims.
Victim #1 (we’re going to call him John):
According to the affidavit, John felt lonely, so he placed an ad on Craigslist to find someone to spend some time with--but he lied about his age, posting he was 18.
Lopicola, 42, replied back. When John later told him he was actually 15, Lopicola allegedly told him “14 to 16 years old is the ‘perfect baby.’ Lopicola continued by saying he likes being a dad to his boyfriends.” The two first met in October 2010 in Boca Raton.
Lopicola picked John up and drove a short distance from the teenagers house. They parked in a dead end street and began to kiss.
Here’s where the story gets more graphic. John told police Lopicola gave him oral sex
“Robert placed his mouth on XXXX penis and XXXX ejaculated in Robert’s mouth,” the report describes.
That’s the only sexual encounter described in the affidavit. After that, the two communicated through texting. Lopicola asked John to send him sexually explicit photos.
“One picture was a face shot, another was of XXXX naked penis and the third picture was of XXXX buttocks. XXXX took the pictures while in his room at his uncle’s house,” according to the report.
John then moved to Michigan, and that’s when he disclosed to police that “he was sexually assaulted by an adult male while living in Florida.”
Read the affidavit:
Victim #2 (we’ll call him David):
David, a student at Palm Beach Lakes High School, also met Lopicola through Craigslist back in 2010. However, Lopicola says the two met “while he was walking on Village Boulevard.”
They started texting each other (it is unclear whether any of the text messages were of sexual nature). David told Lopicola he was 18. David was not out to his family about his sexuality and Lopicola told him he could relate to him in that regard.
After that, David and Lopicola had three sexual encounters, both at the victim’s house and at the defendant’s. In all of them, Lopicola performed oral sex on David until he ejaculated, the report says.
On their last meeting, they were caught by David’s mother.
“They went into XXXXs bedroom and he heard his mother opening the front door. XXX undressed and met his mother wearing a towel, telling her he was going to take a shower. She looked behind the shower curtain and saw Robert Lopicola hiding in her shower,” the report states.
That’s when she contacted the West Palm Beach Police Department and they responded to the residence.
Read the affidavit: