Polk sheriff’s office hires domestic/sex crime investigatorPublished 3:41pm Monday, January 28, 2013
Officer makes two sexual offense arrests
For the first time in several years, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office has a special investigator to handle domestic violence, sex crimes, the sex offender registry and crimes involving children.
Polk County Sheriff Donald Hill hired Det. Sgt. B.J. Bayne, who he says has hit the ground running since her start date earlier this month.
The sheriff’s office recently arrested Clifford Leon Powers, 52, of Mill Spring, who was charged with first-degree sexual offense on a child and sexual offense parental role, according to sheriff reports.
Powers is alleged to have committed the offenses on a female child under the age of 13, according to the report.
Also arrested this month was Christopher Allen Booker, 21, of Columbus, who was charged with three counts of statutory rape, according to sheriff reports. Booker’s arrest stems from alleged offenses with a 15-year-old female victim, states the report.
Powers is out on a $25,000 bond and Booker is still in jail on a $100,000 bond, according to sheriff reports.
Hill said it’s been five to six years since the sheriff’s office has had a detective specifically dedicated to domestic violence, child and sex crimes. Previously, different officers were assigned to different cases as well as monitoring the sex offender registry in Polk County.
North Carolina law requires sex offenders who have been convicted of certain offenses to register with their county sheriff. The sheriff collects information from the offender and court documents and enters the information into a registry database. Sex offenders throughout the state, including Polk County can be found by visiting sexoffender.ncdoj.gov.
Bayne worked with the sheriff’s office several years ago as a detective under former sheriff David Satterfield. She left Polk County to serve as assistant police chief with the University of North Carolina-Asheville before returning to Polk.