BENTON COUNTY (KFSM) — A Benton County deputy was fired Wednesday (Feb. 24) after he was arrested the same day on suspicion of statutory rape of a 16-year-old girl, according to Sheriff Kelley Cradduck.
According to a source, Cradduck fired Deputy Lloyd Sean Chandler following his arrest.
The Bentonville and Rogers Police Departments began the investigation on Friday (Feb. 19).
The Bentonville Police Department issued a press release, stating that Chandler had engaged in sexual intercourse with a minor female. According to the victim, she met the deputy last year at her place of employment. A friendship began and the two talked on social media and also shared inappropriate photos. In June 2015, Chandler invited her to his personal residence in Rogers and the two had sexual intercourse, the release stated.
An arrest warrant was issued for Chandler, 39, for sexual assault in the first degree, and distributing, possessing, or viewing of matter depicting sexually explicit conduct involving a child. Chandler surrendered himself on this warrant and was processed at the Bentonville Police Department before being transferred to the Benton County Jail to await a bond and probable cause hearing, the release stated.
Chandler has been booked into the Benton County Jail. He is being held without bond.
According to his LinkedIn page, Chandler is a Special Investigations Unit sergeant.
Arkansas law states a law enforcement officer cannot engage in sexual intercourse with a person below the age of 18.
***CLARIFICATION: 5NEWS was originally told by the Sheriff Cradduck campaign, which is made up of the sheriff and his campaign manager, that another BCSO deputy had been suspended because of his involvement in the case. The campaign retracted that information later. Any questions or concerns regarding this should be directed to the Cradduck campaign.***