Deputy charged with rape

Richard Matthew West (Image courtesy Sampson County Sheriff's Office)

October 25, 2012 8:06:03 AM PDT
The Sampson County Sheriff's Office said Thursday that one of its former deputies is accused of sexual assault.

Richard Matthew West, 30, of Clinton, is charged with statutory rape, second-degree rape, indecent liberties with a minor, and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Bond was set at $250,000.

The assault was reported on April 23, 2011, and allegedly occurred while West was off duty.

In a news release, the sheriff's office said he was "separated from employment" on April 25, 2011 following a preliminary investigation.

The case was then turned over to the State Bureau of Investigation to avoid any potential conflict of interest. The SBI apparently worked on the investigation for over a year.

West was originally hired by the Sampson County Sheriff's Office in September, 2009. Prior to the sexual assault allegation he did not have any disciplinary history.

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