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Slater police officer charged with statutory sodomy of teen he described as his girlfriend

Benjamin Thomas

SLATER, Mo. — Prosecutors filed charged on Thursday against a Slater, Mo., police officer, who is accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a teen girl.

Benjamin Thomas, 29, was charged with one count of second-degree statutory sodomy in connection with the case.

According to the probable cause statement, the Saline County Sheriff reached out to the Missouri State Highway Patrol on Jan. 3 for assistance in the case involving Thomas, who is a Slater police officer, and his relationship with the 16-year-old girl.

Court documents say in an interview, Thomas said he considered them to be boyfriend and girlfriend.The officer also told investigators that he has allowed the 16-year-old to spend the night at his home on four separate occasions. He claims during the second time she spent the night she had nightmares, and in order to console her he needed to sleep in the same hide-a-bed with her for the rest of the night. He also noted that during the two most recent times she stayed the night, she slept in his bed in the master bedroom.

The probable cause statement also says during a later interview Thomas said he had received nude photos of the 16-year-old. He also said in early to mid-November he and the young girl drove to Slater Lake where they engaged in deviant sexual intercourse.

Thomas’ bond has been set at $15,000 cash only.

In September 2015, the Slater, Mo., fire chief was arrested and charged in connection to a sexual abuse and child porn investigation.