James “Jimmy” Edwin Harris, the 61-year-old owner of Jimmy’s Hang Ten, the restaurant in Flagler Beach, was arrested on late Friday night on two counts of molesting an under-age girl. He’s being held at the Flagler County jail on no bond.
One of the counts is lewd and lascivious exhibition involving a victim younger than 18, a second-degree felony, the other is a count of lewd and lascivious molestation of a victim younger than 12, a first-degree felony punishable by life in prison if convicted. The alleged victim was under Harris’s custodial authority. The two counts together point to an alleged pattern of abuse that would have stretched over many years. The alleged victim is currently 14, according to a Flagler County sheriff’s report.
According to the report, the incident that precipitated the arrest entailed Harris walking into the victim’s room naked and masturbating as the victim pretended to be asleep. Harris himself was “using his cell phone to either take photos or video” while he was in the room, the report states. But the alleged victim had herself set up her phone on a nightstand to record the incident with video, suggesting that she had sought to capture repeat behavior from Harris. The footage did capture Harris in the act, according to the report. The footage was turned over to Flagler County Sheriff’s detectives.
Because cases of sexual abuse of children or adults can be difficult to build, detectives investigating them take deliberate steps that can sometimes take weeks or months before making an arrest, to insure the integrity of the case and the solidity of the evidence in court. This was different. Because of the video evidence secured on Thursday, Harris was almost immediately arrested. Circuit Court Judge Chris France signed the warrant on Friday. Harris was arrested at the Flagler County Courthouse, where he had been summoned by sheriff’s detectives for an interview, at 11:34 p.m. that night.
Other than by law enforcement in the conduct of an investigation, it is normally illegal to record an individual in a private setting–where there is an expectation of privacy–without his or her consent. A bedroom, of course, is one of the most private settings. In 2015, a law went into effect in Florida that allows children to secretly record abusive conversations or incidents as a means of self-protection. Those recordings are admissible evidence in court. Child abusers often groom, manipulate, deceive, and threaten their victims in elaborate ways to prevent them from disclosing the abuse either to family members or to authorities. The law was intended to give children an effective tool of what amounts to a degree of self-defense when otherwise almost entirely powerless and at the mercy of the abuser.
Last November, Charles Swindell, a 51-year-old Palm Coast resident with a long history of violence, was arrested and charged with raping an underage girl after she had managed to record him. He is awaiting trial on the first-degree felony charge in Flagler. He faces two identical charges in Putnam County. His next court appearance is on July 14.
Originally from Niagara Falls, N.Y., Harris is a Palm Coast resident. After a career in construction, he established Jimmy’s Hang Ten at 1112 South Oceanshore Boulevard in October 2020 with his wife. The business employs about 20 people. According to a person familiar with the business, employees at the restaurant were informed of the charges in a staff meeting, where the severity of the matter was discussed bluntly and without sugarcoating.
Harris was featured in a brief Observer profile in January, shortly after he opened Jimmy’s Hang Ten. “So far my reviews have been phenomenal,” he told the paper. “Locals love the place. Word of mouth and social media network is just blowing it up … And I’m really, really pleased with the response I’m getting from everybody.” One of the last events he was promoting at the restaurant before his arrest was a “Swimsuit Model Search.”
Trailer Bob says
What a piece of you know what.
How the hell do these losers live with themselves?
Then the rest of us have to pay for the food to feed him?
Maybe he will do the right thing and decide he doesn’t want to be in prison for that long.
One can only hope.
Blue Crush says
Before people start jumping the gun and saying that they will never visit the restaurant again please consider this. The wife is also a victim of sorts in this horrible event and she is also the co-owner of the business. Its easy to think that not giving business to Hang Ten is somehow sticking it to the alleged perpetrator, but in actuality you are only punishing the wife and children who now also have their livelihood on the line. From what I understand they are going to try and keep the business going. A business that employs 20 of our fellow citizens I might add. Please consider these factors before boycotting the restaurant, thus creating even more hardships for the victims caught up in this unfortunate and despicable act.
jim lang says
Very good point. Don’t punish people needing to make a living because of something they have no control over.
You can’t have an liquor license you a felon….
Shut it down, and from the ashes something better will rise again. But to suggest we build this man’s buissness up for him while he sits in prison is nuts! Flagler County will not support a child rapist! Let the family start something new but Bye Bye Hamg Ten!
Your a idiot! The wife devoted everything to this business also. She had no idea this was going on and her, the family and her daughters life is shattered a d if she decides to make a run at keeping the business to earn a livelihood for her and her daughter then she has 100% support from me.
So is he not profiting from this buissness anymore? I didn’t realize they take your buissness when you get arrested
She had to know 2 years and she had to record it because no one believed her.. That’s coming from someone who has been in a household that never said anything about what happened to my 11 year old sister by my step father was the criminal.. BTW my mother never said anything about it…,
Well Mark although this individual is a sick pedophile his wife and that little girls life has been ripped apart and if they can make a go by keeping the business ru Ning then good for them and I will support them.
I agree! You never know if the wife knew anyway….sorry but that happens also. I am a victim of that type of situation so don’t post hate comments at me.
You aren’t supporting the rapist/molester/violator, you’re supporting the young lady (child)!!
She’s a good girl too.
Her mom has obviously raised a very intelligent lady.
Love you and miss you ladies dearly.
David J Castello says
Agree. This guy is never going to see the light of day. No need to persecute the family and employees.
Rey Alexa says
Absolutely agree. His name will be off the business soon. 20 people don’t need to lose their job over this loser.
Julie Bruce says
Agree 100%. Don’t punish the victims.
You can’t have a business that sells alcohol if you’re a felon. The mother had to know something…
She knew, and I have heard that she has a musician boyfriend now.
Congrats to the girl on recording this scum bag in his despicable act. May he rot in jail.
For real. But I also wonder how long this has been going on and if she either told her mom about it or was too afraid too. Regardless, I hope she gets the mental health she deserves and can carry on with her life well.
Hi, it’s actually been going on for 5 years since I was 10, I was afraid to tell my mother because I knew she loved him and I didn’t want to jeopardize her happiness. I’ve been through a lot and I am seeking mental health! Thank you for the comment I’m trying everyday but I still can’t sleep from what happened <3
Gina Weiss says
V: I am left speechless, you are a warrior, one brave unselfish human being, imagine a little girl putting the love for her mother first and enduring a living nightmare while living under the same roof of a sicko! Go on and hug that little girl you once were V and tell her that everthing is going to be fine, a persons scars is what makes them who they today, strong, confident, brave and you are going to go on to become successful and a great person in life.
Jason Gilliam says
This family has been through a terrible ordeal. Jayne, the victim’s mother, has taken over the business and they have many employees who rely on them. I have already told her that if it is to support her and her child, I will definitely be returning and I hope and pray many of you will to.
From Jayne on Hang-10’s Facebook page…
“In response to the recent arrest of Jimmy I want to assure all of our valued customers that he is no longer at, or affiliated with our establishment. My name is Jayne and I am the co-owner of the restaurant and I have taken over management of the restaurant. I assure you that we will be offering the same superb service and great food that you have all been accustomed to receiving. We hope that you will not allow the actions of one person to deter you from still visiting us. We are all victims of this evil man and pray that you will still support our establishment and staff as we recover from this terrible event. We have an awesome team that do not deserve the actions of this man to ruin their lively hoods. We will be closing tomorrow Monday July 5th to give our valued staff a well-deserved day off. Normal business will resume at noon on Tuesday July 6th. We hope you will still “Hang” with us. Jayne, owner/manager.”
I will support this establishment for the famy.
David J Castello says
Need to rebrand the place. Change the name from Jimmy’s Hang Ten to Jayne’s Hang Ten.
David: Excellent idea maybe get rid of the hang 10 altogether and rename it, Just Jayne’s Place.
Honestly, nothing in this article surprises me. When neighbors of his establishment went to him to complain about the smell of the outdoor port-a-toilets his patrons use – he was rude. When neighbors asked for the music to be lowered – the base went higher. This guy has zero regard for the occupancy and parking limitations of his business. Yes, the City of Flagler Beach is partly to blame for allowing such a place to be nestled between 3 motels, a spa and a residential neighborhood, but, his arrogance and disregard for others shines most outstandingly in this article. Sheriff Staley should pipe nonstop base into his cell and turn off the indoor plumbing … so, so sorry for the young girl and her lack of a responsible adult to protect her from this monster.
Lance Carroll says
My condolences and well wishes for healing to the young lady and her family. BMW: I am guessing that many find your comment as arrogant and selfish. Maybe consider putting up a “for sale ” sign…and move on. Take up your gripe with the city…At the same time, consider the arrogant and selfish comment you have posted?
Lance, I didn’t find his comment selfish or arrogant. Why do you say that?
Beam’s COMMENTS ARE INSENSITIVE READ BETWEEN THE LINES.
Lance: BMW is not being arrogant or selfish, he was just trying to reference this person’s character, and this just goes to show how he treats people in general, no respect, no decency, complete disregard for people in general. If anyone was arrogant/selfish it was this preditor cause any decent upstanding citizen would have been a better neighbor but being that he is what he is a selfish uncaring individual who couldn’t care less about another human the ways in which he reacts to others is par for the course. Glad he got caught and by the way how would you like smelling piss, and having loud music in your backyard and cars taking up all your parking spaces in your neighborhood, so what are you going to say next that the residents didn’t do their “due dilegence” upon buying their homes there many years ago, apparently lots of people who own homes in this area complained to this cretin. BMW was just telling the truth about a bad situation, I am appalled with your comment telling him to put up a for sale sign and to move. People say the same to Pierre on here ,same thing go back where you came from no different!
Agree. Beamer’s comment shows his/her service to self attitude with no regard for those family members whose lives just blew into a million pieces.
There are many jobs out there right now. The employees will find a new job without a problem. As for mom, not sure how she did not know for 2 years….. I lived with a stepdad and went to my mother many times. Just have to wonder how a daughter did not go to the other parent for safety.
I agree….shut em down. I’ve never been there and never will after all this.
You don’t know Jayne at all nor V!
Go say hi and your eyes may just open a bit!
Too bad! I only feel sorry for V. I know from experience this will make her one helluva strong woman. Go V! Mom should have paid attention.
V, you are in my prayers!
Old Men and Under age Teen Girls. If Charges stick its Bon Voyage with Video no less Allegedly. Hope the Girl gets Help moves on.
This county has become a sewer. I miss the county it was 30 years ago, before every sex offender in the country headed here. Every week now.
This country has been a sewer along with the rest of the world, it’s being reported and exposed easier than it once was. Think about the atrocities that have gone on in the catholic church for decades! Perverts have always preyed upon innocent children. Since the beginning of time perverts have been present. Sodom and Gomorrah, ugh. So the sewer has been here as long as man has been here.
The fact that he was videotaping it indicates to me that it was being distributed somehow. Thr people that get off on that pay for that. And if that is true, there is a string here for a detective to follow that could lead to others. If they will.
These type of charges seem to be a common practice in Flagler County. These folks need to find new hobbies.
Art Bowles says
Jimbo99….please be careful the next time you call child sexual abuse a “hobby “!!!!
Hey Art, what if any of these pedophiles had taken up learning a musical instrument or pickleball, are those not considered finding new hobbies ?
A hobby? Filming yourself raping underage girls? You are a sick mfer!
Hey, don’t drag me into this, other hobbies around here seem to breaking into other’s cars, drug houses, arsonist as fire starters & whatever else has made headlines. Imagine if they had applied themselves by choosing & taking up a musical instrument or pickleball instead ?
More perverts are popping up everywhere,in Flagler County. Maybe Florida should make prostitution legal then maybe the perverts would leave the young children alone.
Rey Alexa says
People who are turned on by children are extremely deranged. No amt of adult sex would satisfy them. Prostitution has nothing to do with this.
The dude says
“ When people show you who they are, believe them the first time.”
For now I’m withholding judgement on the wife. But if this girl felt she needed to set up a video camera, it kinda implies she tried to reach out to the adults around her but was either not believed or ignored.
Agreed!!! So very sad for this child.
I am a survivor of childhood sexual abuse — convict and lock this criminal in prison
Go figure, another New Yorker.
I wonder why a nasty comment about New York
I don’t get it either.
FYI To All You Rebels: Niagra is not really NEW YORK. It’s UPSTATE New York. Big difference!!! LOL!!!
Chemical Castration should be mandatory in child abuse cases. Don’t permit him to have any pleasure again. Would like to hear Mom’s story.
Just emailed John Taffer…..would be a awesome spot to start over and change everything….. we’ll see what happens…if a bar ever needed a make over its NOW…