New Mexico officer charged on 100 sex crime counts

PoliceOne Staff Report
(ROSWELL, N.M.) -- A five-and-a-half-year veteran of the Roswell Police Department has been charged with approximately 100 sex crimes including with allegedly having sexual relations with an underage girl, state police announced.

Paul Lathrop, 30, faces 50 counts of criminal sexual penetration of a minor and 50 counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor allegedly occurring between August 1994 and November 1997.

Lathrop was arrested and arraigned Wednesday. If convicted, each penetration count carries a maximum of nine years in prison. each sexual contact charge carries an 18-month maximum prison sentence. He is being held on $100,000 bail.

State police were approached last week by an unnamed victim, authorities said.

A state police spokesman, Sgt. K.C. Rogers. told the Albuquerque Journal that the alleged crimes were unrelated to Lathrop's law enforcement work.

"Any time we have a member of our department involved in any criminal activity, we take it very seriously," Deputy Police Chief David O'Bryon said.

Bail was set at $100,000 for Lathrop, who was placed on paid leave from the department, according to the newspaper.

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