Independence police officer charged with statutory rape - KCTV5

Independence police officer charged with statutory rape

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An Independence police officer has been accused of having sex with a girl as young as 14 years old and has been charged with statutory rape. (KCTV5) An Independence police officer has been accused of having sex with a girl as young as 14 years old and has been charged with statutory rape. (KCTV5)
INDEPENDENCE, MO (KCTV) -

An Independence police officer has been accused of having sex with a girl as young as 14 years old and has been charged with second-degree statutory rape.

The probable cause statement from the prosecutor says they have reason to believe 37-year-old James M. Combs began having sex with the girl when she was 14 years old and that he continued to do so for almost two years.

According to court documents, investigators believe Combs had sex with the girl at his home in Independence between Dec. 2014 and June 2016. The investigation was launched on May 25 of this year.

Authorities say he knew she was juvenile.

Combs surrendered himself to authorities on Thursday and posted a $75,000 bond.

If convicted, he’ll face up to seven years in prison.

KCTV5 questioned the Independence Police Department about whether Combs is still with the Independence police force and whether he was allowed to continue working as an officer during the investigation. The Independence Police Department released the following statement in response:

“James Combs has been employed as a police officer with the City of Independence since 2002. Since receiving this complaint, Mr. Combs has not been performing duties as a police officer. Inquiries on this case, as with all state level cases, will be forwarded to the Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office.”

Combs is a decorated officer who received the Silver Award in Nov. 2015, which recognizes a person has performed a dangerous and distinguished act.

Due to the fact that Combs is an officer, the Independence Police Department asked the Missouri Highway Patrol to investigate this case. The results were then turned over to the District Attorney's Office, and charges were filed on the basis of that information.

Arraignment is scheduled on Oct. 10 at the Jackson County Court in Independence. 

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