Being accused, or worse, convicted of a sex crime can ruin a person’s life. Police and law enforcement agencies throughout Alabama regularly arrest individuals for a range of offense related to criminal sexual behavior. From Mobile and Birmingham to Huntsville and Tuscaloosa, child pornography (also referred to as kiddy porn), sexual assault, rape and other crimes of a sexual nature are some of the most stigmatized offenses recognized by the public. Defending against charges such as these takes experience and knowledge of our vast legal system.
As a Birmingham criminal defense lawyer, I have represented many individuals accused of various offenses, including sex crimes, white-collar crime and drug possession and manufacture. Every one of the cases I handle has one thing in common: the prosecution must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Because citizen is guaranteed that he or she is considered innocent until proven guilty, this is a guiding principle behind out system of laws.
According to a recent news article, a Causey Middle School teacher was arrested in January on child sex abuse charges. Based on police reports, a Mobile County school official revealed that Charles Milton Lewis, Jr. had previously been accused of exposing himself to a Causey student. The accusation was apparently not proven and therefore was not included in the teacher’s personnel file, according to the school system.
Lewis, as 50-year-old a science and reading teacher at Causey, was jailed on January 12 in Baldwin County on charges of sexual abuse of a child under age 12 and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, according to the sheriff’s department. At the time of the news report, the man was being held in the Baldwin County Corrections Center.
According to reports, Lewis is accused of exposing himself as well as fondling a nine-year-old boy who spent an evening at the teacher’s home in July of last year. Reportedly an acquaintance of Lewis, the boy is not a student at Causey, according to a spokesperson for the Mobile County school system.
School system officials have stated that Lewis’ personnel file in the system’s human resources department contains no reported instances of any inappropriate behavior. According to reports, however, the accusation of sexual misconduct came to light in the form of a formal letter of complaint to the school system last fall.
However, according to a school spokesperson, the letter was not placed in Lewis’ personnel file because the central office “gets complaint letters all the time and the allegations were unsubstantiated.” School policy prohibits filing anything in personnel files that is not substantiated.
Lewis has been on paid administrative leave since January 6, following an arrest for drunken driving two days earlier. According to reports, he was involved in an early morning crash on January 4 in Baldwin County. Police say that his blood alcohol content was 0.11 percent at the time of the crash.
Teacher in sex abuse case exposed himself to Causey school student, complaint claims, AL.com, January 15, 2010
Investigation of Mobile teacher deepens, Fox10TV.com, January 14, 2010