Sheriff’s deputy arrested on sexual assault charges

By Erich Wagner (File photo)

An Alexandria sheriff’s deputy was arrested Tuesday evening after allegedly raping a female inmate at the city jail that morning, police said.

Deputy Bryant Pegues, 52, is charged with rape and carnal knowledge of an inmate and is being held in the Arlington County jail. Alexandria Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Amy Bertsch said he has since been fired.

Officials within the sheriff’s office learned of the offense after the inmate told another deputy that she was sexually assaulted. City police were brought in immediately to investigate the allegations, Bertsch said.

Pegues, a resident of Oxon Hill, Md., was a six-year veteran of the sheriff’s office. He was arraigned in Alexandria General District Court Wednesday morning and denied bail.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Brian Porter said in court Wednesday that Pegues used a pen to threaten the victim and raped her between 5 and 6 a.m. Tuesday. He would not comment further about the case after the hearing.

Citing the criminal investigation, Bertsch declined to say whether Pegues violated any policies limiting male deputies’ access to female inmates at the city jail.

“We have male deputies who do work in the housing units with female inmates, but there are policies that control how much access they have,” she said. “We can review our policies and see if there is something that could be done differently or better. … Because of the criminal investigation, we can’t disclose exactly what contact he had with the victim.”

Sheriff Dana Lawhorne ordered an external review of the office’s policies and procedures following the alleged assault. He said current policies include supervisor inspections of jail housing units and a series of monitored security cameras, along with an extensive training program for deputies.

“It’s always prudent to do that, to take a step back and review everything to see if we didn’t miss anything, but I feel confident at this point that we didn’t,” Lawhorne said.

He stressed that the incident should not cast aspersions on the sheriff’s office as a whole.

“Absolutely, it does affect one’s confidence in the trust of an agency sworn to protect the public,” he said. “But you know, the actions of one person are not reflective of the agency or the people who work there. To me, it’s a shock and it’s disappointing to all of us that this occurred, and I’m not pleased about it whatsoever.

“We certainly regret that it happened, and it shouldn’t have happened. But we’ll do everything we can to make sure people have the confidence that it won’t happen again.”

A preliminary hearing in the case is scheduled for July 9. Attorney Ryan Campbell was appointed to represented Pegues. He was not immediately available for comment Wednesday.

Police spokeswoman Crystal Nosal said detectives are determining whether there are any other victims related to the case.

In 2003, former Alexandria Sheriff’s Deputy Eric Mayo was charged with kidnapping and carnal knowledge of an inmate for forcing two women in the city’s work release program to have sex with him. Convicted of the two counts of carnal knowledge, he was sentenced to six years in prison.

Mayor Bill Euille said it is important to have a “zero tolerance” policy toward public safety officers who abuse the public trust.

“We’re all about protecting every citizen, their rights and public safety,” Euille said. “I’m very pleased and proud that the sheriff acted in a responsible and timely manner in calling in the police for an investigation.”

A sentence in this post has been edited for clarity at the behest of the Alexandria Police Department.

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(1) Reader Comment

  1. The case will go away – just like you don’t hear about the 3 Murders -

    The Fraud on the Court – The Treason on the Court in Virginia should not be swept under the carpet any longer. If you don’t believe this can happen to you – I wish the best for you – Because I believed that also. I never believed the corruption could go this deep. That even the FBI at this point is supporting it. http://valaw2010.blogspot.com/2014/05/motion-to-re-open-due-to-fraud-on-cou.html

    Letter: Mary Grace O’Brien Treason / Fraud on the Court – She plays with the Old Boy Network! http://www.scribd.com/doc/223316040/PWC-Letter-Judge-O-Brien-May-2-2014-in-Regard-to-Recusing-Herself-3

    http://valaw2010.blogspot.com/2013/05/virginia-corruption-in-judiciary-its.html
    Victims of Virginia Corruption and Criminal Actions in the Judiciary – It’s not the Crime – it is the Cover up – Virginia a State rated 47th & 49th in corruption

    This page is dedicated to all of those whose stories are yet ended Due to the Corruption in the Judicial System Ruling in Favoritism and Cronyism instead of the Laws and the Rules of the United States Constitution the Virginia State Constitution and the Supreme Court

    Virginia Rated 47th and 49th in Corruption
    Daily Beast rated Virginia second most Corrupt State -http://www.loudountimes.com/index.php/news/article/region_survey_finds_virginia_second_most_corrupt_state987/ -
    State Integrety Gave them an F – 47th most corrupt States -http://www.stateintegrity.org/virginia
    FBI cautions residents of public corruption in Va.
    http://www.wusa9.com/story/news/local/2014/02/18/fbi-cautions-residents-of-public-corruption-in-northern-virginia/5585877/
    WASHINGTON (WUSA) — The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Washington Field Office is looking to identify any public corruption occurring in Northern Virginia.
    The FBI says public corruption can occur “when a public official, at any level of government – local, state or federal – does any official act in exchange for money, or other free goods or services, for private gain. Public corruption could also include public employees who take something of value for their own personal gain, thereby violating the public’s trust.”
    The FBI says many of their investigations into public corruption start once they receive a tip from someone. If you want to help identify potential criminal activity, the Washington Field Office has set up a Northern Virginia Public Corruption Hotline at 703-686-6225 and you can also e-mail them at NOVAPC@ic.fbi.gov.
    Some of the examples of corruption include:
    • Government officials such as DMV employees, city inspectors, taxing or zoning assessors or other regulatory agency employees, or even town councils or mayors;
    • Contracting officials at all levels, including those who manage government contracts or regulatory permits; or, school resource officers who manage school accounts;
    • Local officials colluding with real estate investors to rig the bidding process at foreclosure auctions;
    • A person representing the judicial branch – a judge, member of the jury or court personnel; or,
    • A person representing law enforcement, who steals drugs from criminals, embezzles government funds, falsifies records or smuggles contraband

    Tell the Judges – They do not have Absolut Judicial Immunity – Judge’s should and by law are held accountable – But, we need to be sure they understand that. The Black rope has gone to their heads to believe that they don’t
    https://www.causes.com/campaigns/5241-remove-absolute-judicial-immunity-hold-the-judicial-community-responsible-for-their-actions

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