Lincoln County sheriff’s detective gets 10 years for sex abuse
Scott Edwards, a former Lincoln County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department detective, was sentenced on Dec. 14, 2012, to 10 years in prison followed by three years supervised release for violating the constitutional rights of five women through acts of aggravated sexual abuse and sexual contact while serving as their “drug court tracker,” when the women were participants in the Lincoln County Drug Court program. The crimes occurred from in February 2009 through November 2010.
“The victims in this case were under the court-ordered supervision of the defendant, who used his official position to commit awful acts of sexual assault,” said Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez. “These violations of the constitutional right to bodily integrity severely undermine the credibility of our criminal justice system, make it more difficult for law enforcement officers to do their jobs, and will not be tolerated. The sentence in this case reflects the vigorous action that the Department of Justice and the Civil Rights Division will continue to take to investigate and prosecute such incidents, and is a testament to the courage of the victims who reported these crimes.” (USDOJ press release)
According to court documents, Edwards was a Detective for the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department and served as a “drug court tracker” for the Lincoln County Drug Court until his termination in December, 2010. The Lincoln County Drug Court is a program to which drug offenders are sentenced for the purpose of obtaining intense treatment, counseling and rehabilitation. The Lincoln County Drug Court contracts with the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office to employ law enforcement officers to serve as part-time “drug court trackers” who monitor the whereabouts and curfews of drug court participants. While engaged as a “drug court tracker,” both on duty and off duty, Edwards abused his position of authority and engaged in sexual acts with five female drug court participants without their consent. These sexual assaults resulted in bodily injury to one or more of the victims, and included aggravated sexual abuse and sexual contact with the female victims.
Edwards, 50, Troy, Mo, pleaded guilty in July to two felony counts of deprivation of rights under color of law including aggravated sexual abuse; one felony count of deprivation of rights under color of law including kidnapping; and two misdemeanor counts of deprivation of rights under color of law including sexual contact, and appeared for sentencing before U.S. District Judge Audrey G. Fleissig.
This case was investigated by the St. Louis Division of the FBI and the Troy Police Department, with the assistance of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Hal Goldsmith and Trial Attorney Fara Gold of the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.