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Polk Sheriff: Pennsylvania school board member charged with sex crime against minor

WFLA Tampa logo WFLA Tampa 7/7/2022 Rachel Tucker
Polk Sheriff: Pennsylvania school board member charged with sex crime against minor © Provided by WFLA Tampa Polk Sheriff: Pennsylvania school board member charged with sex crime against minor

DAVENPORT, Fla. (WFLA) — A Pennsylvania school board member was arrested in Polk County for unlawful sexual activity with a minor on Wednesday.

According to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Andrew D. Freeman, 34, was charged with unlawful sexual activity with a minor, a second degree felony. Freeman is a member of the Mt. Lebanon, PA School Board.

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The sheriff’s office began their investigation early Wednesday morning, after the 17-year-old victim told a family friend that Freeman kissed her and touched her inappropriately on July 4. The victim was visiting the Davenport area with a group of family and friends that included Freeman.

The victim told police that Freeman sat beside her, rubbed her thigh and tried to stick his hand up her shorts. A family member entered the room and found Freeman nearly nose-to-nose with the victim. Freeman then rushed out of the room.

Freeman denied the allegations to police, but later admitted to sexually battering the girl, and said “mistakes were made”. He also told a detective "this is not good" because he was an elected official for a school board.

When asked for comment, the Mt. Lebanon School District sent the following statement:

The District has received a news release issued by the Polk County, Florida Sheriff's Office concerning criminal charges filed against Board Member Andrew Freeman. "The charges are very serious and disturbing," said Board President Jake Wyland. "The conduct described in the release is reprehensible and totally inconsistent with any community's expectations of a school board member. We have been in contact with the Polk County Sheriff's Office and are closely monitoring these proceedings. We will continue to gather information as it becomes available.”

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Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd also commented on the arrest.

"Andrew Freeman has violated the trust of his friends and the people who elected him to the school board. I have a feeling the people of Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania no longer want his services with the schools, let alone want him near their children again,” Judd said. “He sexually battered a child. What was he thinking?"

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