Cop Watch

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Officer Found Guilty of Sexual Assault

BARTOW -- A jury found a former Fort Meade police officer guilty Tuesday of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl in March 2003.

Timothy Simmons, 39, was charged with committing a lewd or lascivious battery, which carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. His sentencing has been scheduled for Feb. 24.

The girl was just getting done taking a shower and intended to go to bed, when she opened the bathroom door, Simmons was right in front of her. Before she even knew what was going on, he pushed her back into the bathroom, closed the door behind them and started to get physically aggressive with her.

The girl, now 15, testified that Simmons slapped her several times and put her in a "choke hold" attempting to pull up her nightgown before pushing her to the bathroom floor.

Before the sexual assault, Simmons -- who had been with the Fort Meade Police Department for 11 years -- was fired on Dec. 12, 2002, for drinking and driving.

Simmons was also accused of sexually assaulting a 19-year-old Fort Meade woman three times in 2003, but prosecutors chose not to file formal charges against him, court records show.

In 1999, Simmons was charged with sexually molesting a 14year-old girl while giving her a ride in his Bronco. A jury found him not guilty on Oct. 14, 1999.