On Tuesday, Drew Drechsel of “American Ninja Warrior” faces charges related to child-sex. The winner of the reality competition series was arrested just after filming its new seasons. He was charged “with seeking sex with a minor and inducing her to send him sexually explicit images.”
The 31-year-old Drechsel from Saint Cloud, Florida, made an appearance in court on Tuesday in Florida. Then, he was transferred to New Jersey, Craig Carpentino, said in the statement of New Jersey’s U.S. Attorney.
According to the criminal complaint, the suspect met the minor victimwhen "numerous 'American Ninja Warrior' contestants" went to New Jersey for an event. The criminal affidavit states that in 2015, Drechsel had sex with the 15-year-old victim then. It also states that it happened in Drechsel’s gym at Hamden, Connecticut.
Drechsel did not deny any allegation of having sex with the victim when the mother of the teen confronted him. However, according to the affidavit, Drechsel said that he did not know the victim’s age.
And just last year, the victim who was already 19 years old filed a complaint in Cherry Hill, New Jersey police. On her complaint, she said that when she was 15 to 17 years old, Drechsel and her had sex multiple times.
The charges against Drew could lead him to 20 years to life imprisonment and fine for each charge of $250,000. However, Drechsel is planning to enter a ‘not guilty plea’ and “maintains his innocence,” said Frank J. Riccio II, the lawyer who represents Drew, in a statement to USA TODAY.
And on Wednesday, NBC, in connection with Drechsel, pledged that in the upcoming seasons, they would remove his appearance. The network stated that they are disturbed about the charges against Drew Drechsel.
They added that the show “’ American Ninja Warrior’ is a family show that has inspired countless people, and we will not let the actions of one contestant tarnish the hard work and amazing stories of so many. Moving forward, the American Ninja Warrior brand will sever all ties with Mr. Drechsel, including his appearance on future seasons of the show.”