Ex-Durham school resource officer charged with sex crime involving student

Christopher L. Kelly

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — A resource officer for Hillside High School in Durham was arrested Monday on sex crime charges, including sex acts with a 15-year-old student and second-degree kidnapping, the Durham County Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputy Christopher L. Kelly was placed on administrative leave April 21 and then fired April 28.

According to court documents, a traffic stop for speeding on April 12 led up to Kelly’s arrest. Records show that Kelly was off duty and tried getting away from authorities, but finally pulled over. During the stop, deputies said they spotted a teenage girl trying to hide by the front of Kelly’s vehicle. The deputy got out of his vehicle in order to give the teen the chance to get away, officials said.

Upon further investigation, deputies said they discovered that Kelly was a mentor to the girl in middle school. He later served as a school resource officer at her high school. He also worked off-duty at Northern High School when the teen moved on to the high school. An adult staff member noticed inappropriate interactions, documents show.

Officials said the deputy’s inappropriate conduct included video chats and producing sexually explicit photos. According to court documents, Kelly told the teen, “Don’t tell adults about our relationship. They wouldn’t understand.”

CBS North Carolina learned Monday evening that Kelly is married and has three young children, according to neighbors.

He was arrested Monday and charged with:

  • Statutory sex offense with a child
  • First-degree sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Indecent liberties with a child
  • Sex acts with a student
  • Second-degree kidnapping

Kelly served with the sheriff’s office from Aug. 19, 2013 to April 28.

He had worked as Northern Durham High School’s school resource officer before being transferred to Hillside, the sheriff’s office said.

Kelly has no promotions, demotions or suspensions on his record.

He is now being held at North Carolina Central Prison in Raleigh for safekeeping, officials said.

Kelly’s bond is set at $2.5 million. His first court appearance is set for today.

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