From Staff Reports March 30, 2001 Friday, Final Edition Copyright 2001 The News and Observer The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC) March 30, 2001 Friday, Final Edition
(RALEIGH, N.C.) - A Raleigh police officer was suspended without pay Thursday, one day after he was charged in Hoke County with three counts of taking indecent liberties with children.
Officer Thomas R. Boatman, 41, is accused of sexually assaulting two girls, ages 8 and 9, at his residence, 112 Spruce Pine Dr. in Raeford.
He had worked as a patrolman for the Raleigh Police Department since June 15, 1998. Before his arrest he was working a weekend shift -- Friday, Saturday, Sunday and every other Monday, said Maj. John Knox, Raleigh's interim police chief.
Raleigh police will conduct their own administrative investigation into the incidents that led to Boatman's arrest, Knox wrote in a statement.
Hoke County Sheriff Jim Davis said the complaints against Boatman came through the Hoke County Department of Human Services, following a referral from a therapist in Fayetteville who was seeing the children. The alleged incidents occurred between October and February, Davis said.
The girls were living with Boatman, who is related to them by marriage, and are now staying with another set of relatives.
Hoke County sheriff's deputies arrested Boatman without incident Wednesday night at his residence. At least two Raleigh police officers were also present to retrieve some police department equipment, Davis said.
Boatman's Raeford address, about 85 miles from Raleigh, also appears to be a violation of the Raleigh Police Department's residency requirement. Raleigh Personnel Director Carolyn Simmons said department policy requires officers to live within 50 miles of the municipal building. When Boatman was hired, his address was in Raeford, but he later filed a change of address with the department showing a Wendell address, Simmons said.