Former Covington police officer indicted on rape of teen

COVINGTON, TN (WMC) - A Lauderdale County Grand Jury indicted a former Covington police officer on rape charges Tuesday.

Former officer Raymond Pullen was indicted on five felonies:

  • Rape and statutory rape by an authority figure
  • Incest and sexual battery by an authority figure
  • Sexual battery by an authority figure
  • Rape by an authority figure
  • Aggravated statutory rape

District Attorney General Michael Dunavant said Pullen, 50, committed the acts with a 15-year-old between April 9 and 10.

Pullen is not accused of committing the acts while on duty, but he has been terminated from Covington Police Department.

"Did what we had to do to protect ourselves and our citizens," Covington Mayor Justin Hanson said. "This matter has nothing to do with Sgt. Pullen's work performance or what he did at work. This was an unfortunate personal matter and happened off the clock."

Hanson said the allegations took the department by surprise and that Pullen had a good work history.

"We are not going to tolerate illegal activity of any kind. We take these things very, very seriously," Hanson said.

Pullen was a sergeant with the Covington Police Department and spent 12-years on the force before his termination.

Pullen's attorney released a statement Tuesday saying:

Sgt. Ray Pullen was extremely shocked and deeply saddened to learn of these charges being levied against him. He strongly maintains his innocence and plans to vigorously fight these charges in a court of law. Due to the types of charges levied against him it is hard for the public to remember that Sgt. Pullen is innocent unless proven guilty. In today's day and age with the advent of social media a person charged with these crimes is often convicted in the court of public opinion before all the facts of the case are brought to light. The attorneys of Gray, Huffman, Butler stand ready to seek justice for Sgt. Pullen in this difficult time

Pullen was released on a $100,000 bond, but is expected in court for an arraignment on June 8.

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