National News

Jail officer terminated, facing several charges of sexual battery

Posted August 11, 2017 1:45 p.m. EDT

— An officer working for the Meriwether County Jail has been fired and charged with several felony counts of sexual battery following reports of illegal contact with a female inmate at the facility.

Stephen Sheely, 22, was arrested on Wednesday and charged with violation of oath by a public officer, aggravated sexual battery, sexual assault by a person of law enforcement and two other counts of sexual battery. In all, Sheely is facing three felonies and two misdemeanors.

Details of the crime are not known but Meriwether County Sheriff Chuck Smith says the information received leading to the arrest did not come from the female inmate but through another source.

"I take this very seriously when one of our own not only violates the law and public's trust but also jeopardizes the integrity of this office. I will not tolerate this behavior under my administration. We have conferred with our local District Attorney's Office throughout this investigation and the case will be submitted as any other criminal violation for prosecution." Sheriff Smith said in a press release.

Sheely is currently in the Meriwether County Jail and was terminated by the department on Wednesday.

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