New details have emerged in the investigation of an Airman from Dover AFB who was arrested for raping 14-year-old runaway.
21-year-old Airman First Class Zepplin Taylor-McGinness was arrested on Monday and charged with four counts of second-degree rape and endangering the welfare of a child by harboring a runaway.
It was originally reported that he was arrested by Dover police officers after they who found the girl in his local apartment but more details have emerged about the relationship between the two.
Recently released court documents state a Dover police master corporal said this was “the second time in recent months” the teenager had run away and been found with Taylor-McGinness.
The girl’s whereabouts were revealed to Dover Police on November 14 by the girl’s guardian, who had dealt with Taylor-McGinness in the past.
Initial reports did not indicate how police were able to determine that rape was occurring at Taylor-McGinness’s apartment. The first time police found the victim at his residence the two would not admit to having sex, but police say they found “evidence of wrong-doing” -no other details were provided.
Taylor-McGinness apparently admitted to investigators he raped the 14-year-old girl as many as five times over a few months after meeting her on Tinder.
In the state of Delaware (where Dover AFB is located), a child of 14 cannot consent to sex. Even if the laws were not in place, military regulations set the bar much higher.
Taylor-McGinness admitted to knowing the girl was 14 years of age but committed to carrying on a sexual relationship with her, anyway.
He is the third Dover AFB airman in a year to be accused of raping a teen in recent months.
According to Delaware Online, the USAF has taken a very formal and distant stance on the issue, referring all questions to the Dover Police and Attorney General’s Office.
“Airman 1st Class Zepplin Taylor-McGinness is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. However, we take all allegations seriously as sexual assault is a crime which violates our core values,” an Air Force spokesperson said.
Last year, two airmen were charged with keeping a 15-year-old runaway girl on base, committing several acts of sexual assault.
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