Officer Shane Aaron Knaust
ROGERS -- A Rogers police officer was arrested Friday night in connection with felony sexual indecency with a child.
Shane Aaron Knaust, 26, of 1907 S. Ninth St. Apt. 213 in Rogers was arrested after a 15-year-old girl identified Knaust as having sexually abused her two to three years ago, according to the probable cause affidavit for bond.
The exact time frame of the incident is still being determined based on further interviews with the girl, said Van Stone, Benton County prosecuting attorney.
Knaust was hired as a dispatcher with Rogers Central Communications on Sept. 11, 2002, and was sworn in as an officer on Nov. 14, 2005, said Chief Steve Helms on Saturday.
The incident comes as a shock to Helms and the department, Helms said. Knaust resigned Saturday afternoon adding it was the best thing for him to do, according to Helms.
Helms said he visited Knaust on Friday night at the Benton County Jail to check on his emotional state. Saturday morning Helms presented Knaust with a official release of duty.
The criminal case will proceed but Knaust is no longer employed by the city and further internal review will not occur, Helms said.
Investigator Jeremy Felton with the Benton County Sheriff's Office was notified of the abuse on Friday and interviewed the 15-year-old and her mother that day.
The girl told Felton that Knaust would visit her residence on a regular basis and forced her to "make out" with him, according to the affidavit.
The mother told the investigator Knaust was confronted at that time and told not to be around youth at his church, which the girl attended.
Helms said he never received reports of problems regarding Knaust and was not informed of the incident involving the girl until Friday.
Knaust admitted to investigators he thought the girl was attractive for her age and developed somewhat of a relationship with her, according to the affidavit.
The two kissed on the couch with groping involved, Knaust told investigators.
Knaust was released on a $5,000 bond Saturday afternoon from the Benton County Jail. A no-contact order was also signed by Knaust to have no communication with the 15-year-old or her family.
Knaust is scheduled to appear in Benton County Circuit Court on March 3.
More than two years ago Knaust was the victim of an attempted robbery in November 2005. Knaust was standing near the curb at 1210 S. 11th St. when a 1995 Ford F-150 pickup struck him, throwing him 20 feet, according to police reports at the time.
Knaust suffered some bruising to his face and lost some teeth but was at work the next day.
The hit-and-run was first thought to be an accident until two boys told police it was intended as a robbery. The boys told police they didn't know Knaust was a police officer.
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