A 75-year-old man who denied forcing sex upon a 12-year-old girl in his house and who said it probably was “a zombie” who committed the crime, is being held without bond in the Palm Beach County Jail.
Palm Beach County Sheriff’s investigators confronted Joseph M. Henrisme after the girl told the principal at her Lake Worth area elementary school that she was afraid to go home because the man had just returned to her home from Haiti, according to the arrest report. The man’s relation to the girl was deleted from the report, as was the girl’s name.
The girl told the principal that Henrisme had been coming to her room at night and forcing her into intercourse and other sexual activity since the beginning of the school year. A 9-year-old in the home, whose name also was removed from the report, appeared to corroborate details of the girl’s story to investigators, according to the report.
Henrisme “told her what happens in the house stays in the house. He further told her if she were to tell anyone about what he was doing then he would send her and (the other child) back to Haiti to live with their biological mother.”
When investigators interviewed Henrisme, he denied having intercourse or touching the girl in a lewd manner.
“Joseph claimed that it was probably ‘a zombie’ who committed the allegations … and not him. He alleged that both (the victim) and (the other child) were lying,” the detective wrote.
A doctor who examined the girl for the county’s child protection team said there were physical signs of sexual abuse.
Henrisme is facing charges including five counts of sexual assault by a custodian, one count of lewd and lascivious behavior.