A 49-year-old Youngsville man told a judge Monday that the teen he is accused of pimping from an Econo Lodge Motel told him she was 20.
Jeffrey Michael Botellio, of 101 Beachwood Drive, is charged with sexual servitude and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Police said he kept a 15-year-old female runaway from the District of Columbia in a room at the motel, at 2617 Appliance Court in Raleigh, and sold her sexual services.
"I was not doing, as far as I know, anything with a minor," Botellio said. "I still think she is 20 years old. I think she is lying. I think she's saying she's a juvenile and she's not."
Prosecutor Melanie Shekita said there is plenty of evidence that the girl is, in fact, 15.
Botellio told Wake County Judge Ned Mangum he had paid the girl's bond from the Wake County jail, and said she would not have been held there if she was a juvenile. He said he was trying to help her find a place to stay.
Mangum sent Botellio back to jail on bond of more than $200,000.
Two other people were charged last week with similar offenses related to the same girl. In court Monday the prosecutor said the suspects posted advertisements for sex with the girl online.
Elaton White, 20, of Raleigh, is accused of videotaping the teen having sex. He faces charges of first-degree sexual exploitation of a minor, statutory rape, taking indecent liberties with a child, crimes against nature and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Jacquelin Bann, 20, of Cary, is charged with prostitution and contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile.
The girl has been reunited with her family in D.C.