TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Valrico man was accused of molesting numerous young girls, many under the age of 12, between 1998 and 2020, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.

While speaking with victims, detectives learned that Thomas David Lair, 62, molested several young girls after befriending them and their families, a news release said.

Lair was arrested Wednesday on five counts of lewd or lascivious molestation (victim under 12) and two counts of lewd or lascivious molestation (victim 12-15). An investigation is still ongoing.

“Our detectives are concerned that there could be other children affected, and we are asking anyone else who may be a victim not to be afraid to come forward and speak out,” Sheriff Chad Chronister said. “It’s important for parents to be cautious of any adult they entrust to care for their children and to also listen to their children if they say they are uncomfortable around an individual.”

Authorities said any additional victims are urged to call the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office at 813-247-8200.