Chaldon Sanon, 20, of Haines City.

JURY VERDICT: Haines City man convicted for sexually battering 9-year-old girl

Chaldson Sanon told law enforcement he had sex with a little girl, admitting he knew it was wrong.

Chaldon Sanon, 20, of Haines City.

At the end of a two-day trial, a jury found 20-year-old Sanon guilty of sexual battery Thursday. Sanon faces a mandatory life sentence that will be imposed May 18.

Assistant State Attorney Mikaela Perry called the victim to the stand to testify about the October 2015 incident.

The little girl, who is now 10, took the stand Wednesday to tell the jury how Sanon lured her upstairs to his bedroom and away from other children she was playing with. He threatened her, demanding she take her clothes off, and forced himself on her.

The girl said she finally convinced him to stop after lying about how she needed to use the restroom. She immediately left his bedroom and went downstairs to where the other children were.

Later that evening, the girl’s mother noticed a mark on the victim’s neck, prompting her to ask where she’d gotten it. The victim told her mother what happened and how Sanon said she had to keep it a secret.

During interviews with law enforcement, Sanon said he wrongfully engaged in sexual activity with the girl.

Assistant State Attorney Mikaela Perry addresses jurors during closing statements Thursday. Sanon was found guilty of sexual battery and faces a mandatory life sentence.

The defense argued that because there was no DNA, there was no proof to prove Sanon had actually committed the crime. But Perry reminded jurors in closing statements that Sanon admitted to battering the victim, and that was proof enough.

“You know because she (the victim) told you here,” Perry said, pointing to the witness stand. “And you know because he (Sanon) told you himself.