CARTER COUNTY, Ky. (WSAZ) – A former Carter County Sheriff's deputy was on the other side of the law Monday afternoon as he appeared in court for criminal charges while he was an employee of the Sheriff's Department.
Former Deputy Matthew Morrison, 38, is charged with sodomy in the first degree, trafficking in a controlled substance in the second degree and official misconduct. He is accused of forcing sexual favors in exchange for not serving an arrest warrant. His defense attorney entered a not guilty plea on his behalf in court Monday.
“We work side by side, and you think you know somebody,” Carter County Sheriff Casey Brammell said. “He was what I considered a good deputy until these allegations come out. Now, he has no business in law enforcement.”
Brammell said he fired Morrison on Feb. 8, after a complaint that he had asked for someone’s phone number while on duty. A few days after that, Brammell said he heard more serious allegations about the deputy, who had been with the department since 2010.
Kentucky State Police tell WSAZ.com they got a complaint from a woman to whom Morrison was supposed to serve an arrest warrant who said she was forced into sexual acts with him in exchange for not serving the warrant. According to a release from Kentucky State Police, Morrison had also been involved in several illegal exchanges of pills.
A grand jury in Carter County indicted Morrison on those charges on Friday. Morrison turned himself in to police after warrants were issued for his arrest.
“[Law enforcement officers] should be held to a higher standard cause they're placed in a position of trust, and the public should be able to trust them,” Lt. J.W. Gibson of the Kentucky State Police said.
This is the third deputy on the force to be arrested since November.
“I've been in the rebuilding process on this department and going through some growing pains,” Brammell said. “But every one of my deputies know[s] that this will not be tolerated.”
The prosecutor tells WSAZ.com he is asking for a special prosecutor to be appointed in this case because he worked closely with Morrison.
Morrison’s defense attorney says he hopes people in Carter County will listen to all of the evidence before making a decision in this case.
Morrison is in jail and will appear back in court next month.
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