Former of­fi­cer sen­tenced for sex-re­lated crimes

Chattanooga Times Free Press - - REGION -

LE­BANON, Tenn. — A former sher­iff’s deputy in Ten­nessee has been sen­tenced to 15 years in pri­son for sex-re­lated crimes with a mi­nor.

The Ten­nessean re­ports 47-year-old Joseph Pat­ton was sen­tenced Fri­day to a range of eight to 18 years, with the length to be de­cided by a judge.

Pat­ton pleaded guilty in Wil­son County to three counts of sex­ual bat­tery by an author­ity fig­ure and three counts of so­lic­it­ing sex­ual ex­ploita­tion of a mi­nor in Au­gust.

The vic­tim was 14 when Pat­ton be­gan the re­la­tion­ship that in­volved in­ap­pro­pri­ate phys­i­cal con­tact with­out in­ter­course and ex­changes of ex­plicit pho­tos and text mes­sages, ac­cord­ing to tes­ti­mony.

Pat­ton was a 24-year vet­eran of the Wil­son County sher­iff’s de­part­ment. He was fired in 2016 when the charges sur­faced. He had also worked as a school re­source of­fi­cer in 2013.

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