Convicted Felon Charged With Assaulting 9-Year-Old

A Gulfport man with a long criminal history is charged with physically and sexually assaulting a nine-year-old Biloxi girl.

Biloxi Police say the child was playing outside the Keesler Bay Villa apartments around 6pm Tuesday. She told investigators a man, whom they believe to be 24-year-old Decarlos Antonio Moore, grabbed her.

"The victim was outside playing and what she related to us is that the suspect took control of her and physically and sexually assaulted her. We don't know how she came back to her father," Investigator Darrin Peterson said.

"Of course, at the time of the incident last night she was in shock and not in real good shape to talk, so we're still getting more details of what happened and how she got away."

Peterson says the attack occurred in the same apartment where they arrested Moore.

Moore is no stranger to the justice system. Court records show he was indicted as a habitual offender in 1997. That same year he was convicted on robbery and manslaughter charges. He served time for those crimes.

In 2001 he was convicted again on drug charges and sentenced to four years. Peterson says the latest charges against Moore get top priority.

"We're waiting on assistance from other agencies to get interviews with the child when she's ready to give interviews. And we're waiting on results of lab tests of evidence we collected. Based on those things, we'll probably be more accurate with the charges."

The Department of Human Services is assisting in the investigation.

Moore is in the Harrison County jail on $600,000 dollars bond on charges of kidnapping, sexual battery and aggravated assault.

Jail records show Biloxi Police charged him in 2000 with another sex crime involving a child. But prosecutors say the child's family did not pursue the case and the charge was dropped.