Rick Crawford pleads not guilty to federal charge of enticing a minor

Former NASCAR driver Rick Crawford, 59, pleaded not guilty Thursday to a federal charge of enticing a minor.

Crawford was arraigned Thursday in U.S. District Court in Orlando, Florida, after being indicted Wednesday, according to federal court documents. He was arrested last week.

Crawford obtained his release from jail Friday morning and will be limited to home confinement. He will not be allowed to have any unsupervised contact with minors and is not allowed to use any device to connect to the internet. He had to give up any passport he had and was ordered to wear an electronic monitoring device.

According to allegations in a federal complaint, Crawford met a federal agent posing as a man whom Crawford had planned to pay $50 to $75 to have sex with the man's 12-year-old daughter. That would be lewd and lascivious battery under Florida law.

The complaint states Crawford denied to agents after his arrest that he was there to meet anyone underage.

"Crawford acknowledged that the communications indicated that a 12-year old girl would be involved, but stated that he found that hard to believe," the complaint said. "He states he showed up to see whether or not the father had a 12 year old daughter, but claimed he would not have gone through with it if the child had been underage."

A five-time race winner while competing 13 seasons in NASCAR's truck series, Crawford faces 10 or more years in jail if found guilty. His trial is scheduled for May 7. NASCAR has removed Crawford from its list of industry experts who could hear appeals of penalties, a NASCAR spokesman said last week.