Ex-NFL cheerleader Elizabeth Garner, 42, 'fondled boy, 12, at party - because she thought he was a man'
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A former NFL cheerleader is accused of following a 12-year-old boy into a bathroom, fondling his penis and offering to perform oral sex on him but she claims she's innocent because she 'thought he was a man.'
Elizabeth 'Leigh' Garner from Nashville, Tennessee, was charged last week with sexual battery and solicitation of a minor for child rape in the February incident.
According to Murfreesboro police, the married 42-year-old, who cheered three seasons for the Tennessee Titans until 2008, was at a party when she tried to seduce the boy, who is understood to be the son of the host.
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Accused: Elizabeth 'Leigh' Garner, pictured, from Nashville, Tennessee, was charged last week with sexual battery and solicitation of a minor for child rape in the February incident
The boy told police that Garner asked him whether he'd 'ever been with a woman' before she tried to pull down him pants.
He then bolted from the bathroom and told his mother what happened, who reported her friend to police.
Garner later told sex crimes detectives the alleged assault was all a misunderstanding, 'that she was drunk that evening and she got the boy confused with a man' who was also at the residence.
Allegations: The former NFL cheerleader, pictured, is accused of following a 12-year-old boy into a bathroom, fondling his penis and offering to perform oral sex
Cheer: The married 42-year-old, pictured, cheered three seasons for the Tennessee Titans until 2008
'That's just absolutely no excuse for sexual assaulting a child,' said officer Kyle Evans. 'If you can't tell the difference between a 12-year-old and an adult then there are problems.'
According to WTVF, Garner gained a measure of fame while she was in the Titans' cheer squad because, at 38-year-old, she was considerably older than her fellow cheerleaders who were generally in their 20s.
Numerous health and fitness blogs featured the busty blonde and her secrets to staying in shape when she made the team.
Garner was released on a $30,000 bond and faces more than eight years' prison if she's convicted.
Posing: The boy told police that Garner, pictured, asked him whether he'd 'ever been with a woman' before she tried to pull down his pants
Jail: Garner was booked into Rutherford County Jail, pictured, where she was released on $30,000 bond
The Titans said she hasn't had anything to do with the team for several years.
Garner and her husband, who she said on blog Chrissy Fitness in 2008 proposed to her during cheer-leading training with a dozen roses, seem to be sticking together through the allegations and defense that she thought the boy was another man.
They spoke with WTVF together, to proclaim her innocence.
In the interview with Chrissy Fitness, the 5' 2" tall 110 pound woman said maintaining her cheerleader-worthy body was hard work.
She said she hit the gym daily to maintain her envied physique, doing spins and turbo kicks and twice a week she factored in strength training with weights to sculpt her muscles.
When it came to her diet, she explained in the 2008 article that she stuck to 1700 calories a day and ate mainly vegetables.
'I've never been one to eat a lot of junk food,' she explained.