Officer Faces Charges of Unlawful Sexual Activity

An officer with the Blountstown Police Department faces criminal charges following an investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE). After a warrant was issued for his arrest, Charles Bender, 52, was arrested without incident and is currently being held in the Calhoun County Jail.

The allegations that prompted the investigation came from a juvenile in the Police Explorer program, who disclosed the information to a teacher, which was required by Florida Statute to report the allegation. The Blountstown Police Department was notified, and Chief Glen Kimbrel requested that the Florida Department of Law Enforcement conduct an investigation into the allegations.

The investigation revealed that Bender engaged in an inappropriate sexual relationship with the juvenile over a two-month period. An additional juvenile victim was identified through the course of the investigation that will result in a charge of Battery for inappropriately touching the second female victim in an incident that occurred last year.

Bender was charged with four counts of Unlawful Sexual Activity with Certain Minors(FS 794.05), which is a second-degree felony. Bender was also charged with one count of Battery(784.03), a first degree misdemeanor, for activities with the second juvenile victim.

While the investigation was on-going, Bender was on paid administrative leave.

For more information, contact:

Michael Morrison
Public Information Officer
FDLE - Pensacola
(850) 410-8258