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Mon, Dec 22, 2014

Former NFL cheerleader arrested again

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Former NFL cheerleader arrested again | Elizabeth Garner, Child Abuse, Crime, Circuit Court, MPD, Murfreesboro

Elizabeth Garner

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. -- The former Tennessee Titans cheerleader who is on probation for allegedly fondling a 12-year-old boy has been arrested again after failing a drug test.

Elizabeth L. Garner, 42, was arrested Thursday after testing positive in early December for an opium-based prescription drug, a violation of her probation. In response, Rutherford County Circuit Court Judge David Bragg issued a warrant for her arrest.

Garner was released later that day from the Rutherford County Adult Detention Center on a $50,000 bond.

She is scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing on the most recent charge in January 2014.

In October, Garner was sentenced to 18 months of supervised probation and ordered to pay a $500 fine after pleading no contest to a reduced charge of felony reckless endangerment during a hearing in Circuit Court in Murfreesboro.

Garner, who has not cheered for the Titans in more than four years, was also required to attend drug and alcohol awareness classes twice a week, submit to random drug tests, and avoid all contact with the victim and his family as part of the terms of her probation.

The Nashville resident was originally charged with one count each of aggravated sexual battery and solicitation of a minor for rape of a child. If she had been convicted of those charges, Garner would have faced at least eight years in prison.

Garner, who is married, was indicted by a Rutherford County grand jury in March following an investigation by detectives with the Murfreesboro Police Department, which had jurisdiction over the case.

In February, an intoxicated Garner was at a party in Murfreesboro when she reportedly followed the boy into a bathroom and attempted to perform oral sex on him, according to a Police Department incident report.

Garner then allegedly grabbed his penis on the outside of his pants and tried to take off his shorts, but the boy managed to run out of the bathroom before anything else occurred.

After his mother learned about the incident, she contacted Murfreesboro police.

During an interview with Murfreesboro police, detective Tommy Roberts reported Garner insisted the incident was the result of a misunderstanding and mistaken identity.

Garner “stated that she was drunk that evening and that she got the boy confused with a man who was also at the residence,” Roberts said in the incident report filed in February.

In response to her statements made earlier this year, officials with the Police Department said there is no legitimate reason that can ever be given for abusing a child, no matter the gender of the suspect.

“There is just absolutely no excuse for sexually assaulting a child,” said Sgt. Kyle Evans, the public information officer for the Police Department. “If you cannot tell the difference between a 12-year-old and an adult, then there are problems.”

Her subsequent arrest grabbed national headlines, at one point even renewing a long-held debate as to whether female sex predators are treated differently than their male counterparts.

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Child Abuse, Circuit Court, Crime, Elizabeth Garner, MPD, Murfreesboro
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