A Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer has been charged with multiple sex offenses involving a girl who was 10 or 11 years old at the time, police announced Tuesday.
Officer Matthew Porter, 54, faces 28 felony charges, including 20 counts of indecent liberties and eight counts of first-degree sex offense, police said.
The victim is now 17 and lives in Nevada but lived in Charlotte at the time, CMPD Deputy Chief Katrina Graue said.
This month, the victim told officials in Nevada that Porter sexually assaulted her between July 2010 and December 2013 in Charlotte. Porter was a friend of the victim’s family and was off-duty at the time, Graue said.
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Porter was arrested at his home Tuesday, Graue said. He has been placed on unpaid administrative leave.
“I am disappointed that one of our officers is accused of this very serious offense,” Chief Kerr Putney said in a statement. “We represent the law and absolutely will not tolerate one of our own violating it. It’s our job to protect this community. We have no place in our ranks for anyone who would violate the trust of a child in this manner.”
Porter started working for the department in July 1995 and was assigned to the aviation unit since 1997, Graue said, and he had not worked on any recent sexual assault cases because he was a helicopter pilot.
Graue said based on the charges, there were eight separate incidents of sex offense. She said the timing of the report is not unusual.
“It is not uncommon for child victims to delay reporting as they grow a little more mature and seek counseling,” Graue said. “It is not uncommon for disclosures to come out years later.”
CMPD began investigating after they were contacted by officials in Nevada on Feb. 8. Two CMPD detectives traveled to Nevada to talk to the victim and her family and police also interviewed family members in North Carolina, Graue said.
Graue said police are not aware of any other victims, but she urged anyone with information to call 911 or contact Crime Stoppers.
LaVendrick Smith: 704-358-5101; @LaVendrickS