• Press Release

Andrews man pleas guilt for child sexual assault

Benito Morales Mendez

On September 27, 2022, 43 year old Benito Morales Mendez, appeared before the Honorable William Coward and entered a plea of guilty to Indecent Liberties with a Child.

Judge Coward sentenced Mendez to serve a minimum of 16 months to a maximum of 29 months in the North Carolina Department of Adult Corrections. Mendez was given 728 days pretrial confinement credit. Mendez has since been taken into federal custody for pending matters. Mendez is registered as a sex offender and is required to remain registered for a period of 30 years. A permanent no contact order was entered to prevent contact by Mendez with the child victim in this case.

In January 2020 a complaint was made with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office of an allegation of sexual assault involving a minor child. Pursuant to this allegation, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by HAVEN Child Advocacy Center, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, Cherokee County Department of Social Services, Cherokee County Schools, the United States Marshal Service Fugitive Apprehension Task Force, and the Department of Homeland Security Investigations.

Sheriff Derrick Palmer stated “As you can see it takes a team effort and one of the reasons we work so closely with our local and Federal partners. We know that only through cooperative team work we are able to bring these cases to close. Again, we thank the office of District Attorney Ashley Welch for their assistance in this and other cases.”

To report suspicious activity and suspect violations of the law please call 828-837-1344 or submit a tip at crime.tips@cherokeecounty-nc.gov.

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