Nicholas, 54, was arrested in Boca Grande, Fla., while on vacation after allegedly punching and kicking his 19-year-old mentally disabled son, according to a Lee County Sheriff’s Office report. The document indicates that multiple witnesses outside of a restaurant saw Nicholas hit his son repeatedly with a closed fist, push him onto the sidewalk and then kick him more than five times.
The Lee County Sheriff’s Office contacted Nicholas about two hours after the incident in the hotel room where he and his son were staying. A sergeant reported a small blood stain on a bedspread in the room and observed that the victim had redness and welts on his neck and a foot-sized abrasion to the skin around his left ribcage that appeared to have a shoelace pattern to it, the report says. Nicholas was placed under arrest and transported to the Lee County Jail without incident. He was released Nov. 24 on a $20,000 bond.
Nicholas explained his behavior by saying his son, who has a condition similar to autism, was being combative during lunch, and that he needed “corporal punishment.” He has no intentions of resigning. “I don’t think I committed a crime, so why would I?” he said.