MIAMI – (CBS4) – A rising FIU baseball star spent some time behind bars in the Bahamas facing charges that he raped two teen girls, CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald reported.
Last week, Garrett Wittels was arrested along with four friends after two 17-year-old American girls told authorities that they had been raped. The alleged incident occurred on Dec. 20th at the Atlantis Resort and Casino in Nassau.READ MORE: 3 Children Injured In NW Miami-Dade Crash
Wittels and two of his friends were released on $10,000 bond following a court hearing on December 23rd, the Herald reported.
The newspaper identified the other friends involved in the alleged crime as Robert Rothschild, 21; Jonathan Oberti, 21; Steven Tromberg, of Miami; and Jon Shapiro, Bahamian Chief Magistrate Roger Gomez told the newspaper.
Wittels and Rothschild were both formally charged with two counts of raping the teen girls. Oberti has been charged with raping one of the teen girls. Meanwhile, Tromberg and Shapiro remain in custody for their connection to the incident.
Wittels, 20, has the second longest hitting streak in NCAA history. Many had expected him to break his record at the start of baseball season this February.
Wittels’ father told the newspaper that he stood by his son.READ MORE: Miami-Dade Residents Gather To Protest Closure Of Matheson Hammock Park's West Entrance
“Anyone can accuse anyone of anything at any time,” Michael Wittels, an orthopedist, told the Herald. “He’s not doing well, obviously. He’s blown away. He’s devastated that someone would accuse him of this.”
Michael Wittels also added that the friends had met the girls at a casino and followed the men “willingly” to a private party.
Surveillance video shows the girls acted aggressively, Michael Wittels said. The girls had also been drinking and said they were students at the University of Arkansas, the newspaper reported.
Their age is not an issue because Bahamian law states the age of consent for sexual activity is 16.
Michael Wittels suggested the girls later found out who Garrett was and “that was the road they took,” Wittels told the paper. “He hasn’t been found guilty of anything. I hope [the media] doesn’t hang him for nearly an allegation. That’s all this is.”
It’s unclear if the arrest will make Garrett ineligible to play in FIU’s 2011 season. FIU’s athletic director Pete Garcia declined to say much and simply told the Herald that “we will continue to gather any possible information as it becomes available.”MORE NEWS: RNC Donors Gather To Hear Trump, Others In Palm Beach, The GOP's 'New Political Power Center'
CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed to this report.