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2 more battery charges filed against Crab Stop Owner

VERO BEACH — Two more battery charges were filed against Crab Stop Owner Ellis Buckner Jr. after two more former employees accused him of touching them inappropriately.

Buckner, 51, of Sebastian, turned himself in to the Indian River County Jail Friday, Vero Beach police spokesman Master Officer Darrell Rivers said. Buckner was charged with two counts of battery.

Buckner’s booking information was not immediately available. The two new charges stem from incidents that happened at the previous Crab Stop location in Vero Beach on 14th Avenue and the new site on Royal Palm Pointe.

Rivers said the two incidents were both sexual in nature. The two victims who filed complaints are both women, Rivers said.

The ages of the women and further details on the incidents were not immediately available.

A Facebook group called “Molested Employees of the Crab Stop,” created June 9, shows several other workers making complaints against Buckner regarding inappropriate touching.

As of last weekend, two more women – former employees – filed complaints against Buckner regarding inappropriate touching at the Crab Stop location in Vero Beach, Rivers said. Those complaints are under investigation, Rivers said.

Other charges against Buckner may be forthcoming, Vero Beach police said.

Buckner’s arrest comes a week after he was charged with battery in another incident involving a former employee at the Crab Stop location in Sebastian. For that incident, a 21-year-old bartender told Sebastian police Buckner squeezed her upper thigh for about 10 seconds and said “Nice, you been working out,” an incident report shows.

Buckner told police he knelt down beside the woman to fix a fan. The owner said he put his hand out and touched the woman to make sure she didn’t bump into him.

Sebastian police arrested Buckner, who was later released from the county jail on $500 bond. The Sebastian investigation was separate from the Vero Beach investigation.

Buckner pled not guilty to the charge and waived his formal arraignment, court records show. Buckner previously worked as a paramedic and firefighter for Indian River County Fire Rescue for 25 years before opening up Crab Stop.


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