Former Anderson County school resource officer arrested, accused of inappropriate conduct with two students

Crime and Courts

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A former Anderson County Sheriff School Resource Office is facing charges being accused of inappropriate conduct with two Clinton High School students.

James Lawson, 36, was arrested Wednesday at his home after being indicted on charges of solicitation of a minor and two counts of solicitation of a minor to observe sexual conduct by electronic means.

Lawson resigned on Dec. 10, the same day allegations were brought to the attention of the office and the school, according to the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office.

Anderson County Sheriff Russell Barker said an investigation began immediately.

“I’m proud of how quick and professional my staff and school officials handled this incident,” he said. “The criminal behavior exhibited by James is incomprehensible. Conduct such as this will not be tolerated and will be handled with the strongest means of enforcement at my disposal. I especially applaud the victims in this case for their bravery and strength to come forward.”

Lawson served as a school resource officer at CHS for four months.

“Our schools are filled with great teachers and administrators along with valuable young students,” Barker said. “Likewise, our SRO unit is full of leaders who have a strong passion of protecting our schools. This incident does not and will not change that.”

Lawson was booked into the Anderson County Jail and has since posted bail. He is tentatively scheduled to appear in court April 30.

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