Rowan man charged, accused of sex offense of young child

Published 10:53 am Tuesday, January 21, 2020

By Shavonne Walker

SALISBURY — A Rowan County man was charged this weekend with felony sex offense charges after he was accused in December of inappropriate behavior involving a young girl over a three- to four-year period, according to Rowan County Sheriff’s Capt. John Sifford.

Clayton Briggs III, 67, of the 100 block of Midway Street, Cooleemee, was charged on Friday with three counts of felony statutory rape and four counts of indecent liberties.

According to Sifford, the accusations were brought to law enforcement attention Dec. 5, 2019, after the victim told her mother. The victim is now 9 years old and is known to Briggs. According to investigators, the alleged abuse occurred over a few years. The investigators brought the charges after several follow-up interviews, forensic interviews and a consultation with the Rowan County District Attorney’s Office.

Briggs reportedly had no interaction with the victim for some time and that’s when investigators said she told her mother. Salisbury Police served the arrest warrant. Briggs was issued a $100,000 secured bond and has since been released from the Rowan County Detention Center.

Briggs unsuccessfully ran for mayor of Cooleemee in the previous election, according to the Davie County Board of Election.