Chairman of China Grove parks board faces four felony indecent liberties charges

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Staff report
CHINA GROVE ó A well known resident who ran twice unsuccessfully for the China Grove Board of Aldermen has been charged with taking indecent liberties with a minor.
Jimmie Higgins, 63, of 916 Spring Branch Lane, is charged with four felony counts of taking indecent liberties with a 9-year-old girl.
Higgins is chairman of the town’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Board and has continually pushed for development of parks.
He was arrested Thursday night after he turned himself in at the town police department. He posted a $30,000 bond and was released from the Rowan County Detention Center.
Higgins, contacted Friday at his automotive repair business on U.S. 29, had no comment.
Police Chief Hodge Coffield said family members of the girl came to the police department on Oct. 23 and reported the allegations, which involved inappropriate touching. Coffield said police referred it to the Rowan County Department of Social Services, which is standard procedure.
The child went through the required assessment and examination. After completion of the Social Services review, Officer Steven A. Wood did additional interviews.
The incidents in the charges occurred between Aug. 15, 2008, and Oct. 17, 2008, according to the warrants. Higgins’ first court appearance is set for Jan. 20.