The following press release has been issued by Cherokee County Sheriff's Office. All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Murphy, NC — Cherokee County Sheriff Derrick Palmer announced the August 20th , 2016 arrest of 43-year-old Dennis James Lavender, of Murphy, North Carolina for Sexual Assaults involving a child.
In March of 2015, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office began a joint investigation with the Cherokee County Department of Social Services pertaining to allegations that Lavender had committed sexual assaults of a minor child. The investigative case was presented to the Cherokee County Grand Jury in April of this year. The grand jury handed down indictments for First Degree Sex Offense as well as indecent liberties with a minor.
Once the indictments were issued, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office began looking for Lavender in an effort to arrest him. On August 20th, 2016, information was made known to Cherokee County Deputy Wooten who arrested Lavender without incident in the Martins Creek Community of Cherokee County.
Lavender is currently in the Cherokee County Detention Center under a $500,000 secure bond and is expected to be in Cherokee County Superior Court on November 7th, 2016.
Because of the age of the victims and the sensitive nature of the incident, no further information is expected to be released from this office.
Sheriff Palmer encourages anyone that has information on this crime or any other to report it. To report crime in Cherokee County, you can call the anonymous tip line at 828-837-1344 or email a tip at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 911 if you observe a crime in progress.
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