NPD officer indicted for exploitation of a child

Published 12:04 am Saturday, September 9, 2017

NATCHEZ — A grand jury indicted Friday a former Natchez police officer after he allegedly displayed a lewd video of himself to a child.

Thaddeus Perry, 26, 9 Oak Place who was terminated by NPD Aug. 21, was indicted for exploitation of a child.

Natchez Police Chief Walter Armstrong said the child told her mother about the incident that allegedly occurred July 1, and the child’s mother came to the police department July 5 with the allegation.

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Armstrong said the crime allegedly took place at an apartment complex on Oak Place.

“(Perry) displayed an inappropriate video of himself unclothed from the waist down to a juvenile female,” Armstrong said.

The child is reportedly approximately 14 years old.

Armstrong said Perry already was on a disciplinary leave of absence when Armstrong became the police chief, but the new chief moved to terminate Perry soon after.

“I don’t know him — I never met him, but obviously he was not a good cop,” Armstrong said.

Armstrong said Perry was not on duty at the time of the alleged crime. The police chief added that he was not sure if the incident was isolated or something reoccurring.

Armstrong said Perry was placed on disciplinary leave and told to hand in his equipment immediately after the department was made aware of the allegation.

“Unfortunately, these types of things will happen from time to time with law enforcement officers, but it is how we choose to handle these types of situations when they happen,” Armstrong said. “We just cannot and will not have anybody out there with a gun and badge conducting themselves in such a manner that is inappropriate and obviously, illegal.”

Armstrong said Perry’s departure from NPD was not made public because the department Perry had merely been alleged of a crime and was not formally charged until Friday.

“On personnel matters, whenever a person is put on leave (or fired), it’s not something that we would normally report,” Armstrong said.

State law stipulates that anyone found guilty of exploitation of a child could face a fine of $50,000 to $500,000 and anywhere between 5 and 40 years in prison.