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AG tackles Buffaloe case

JACKSON – The criminal case against a veteran law enforcement officer who also once served as the Captain of Conway-Severn Rescue Squad is in the hands of the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office.

According to Noelle Talley, Public Information Officer for the N.C. Department of Justice, the Special Prosecutions Section of the Attorney General’s Office has accepted the State vs. Christopher (Chris) Turner Buffaloe case for prosecution.

Buffaloe, 27, was arrested in May of this year and charged with allegedly engaging in sexual activity with a 14-year-old girl.

Talley said the Attorney General’s Special Prosecutions Section reviews and prosecutes dozens of cases a year at the request of local District Attorneys.

“The Special Prosecutions Section is available to all District Attorneys in the state when there is a conflict of interest or when there are other issues that prevent a District Attorney from handling a case,” Talley told the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald.

The case was on the Criminal District Court docket (probable cause hearing) for Dec. 8 in Jackson, but was continued for a third time.

Talley said the state attorneys are reviewing the investigative file in this case and should make a decision soon about the charges facing Buffaloe.

The date of offenses, according to warrants filed in the Northampton County Courthouse and based on investigation by the State Bureau of Investigation, range from March 1 to April 14 of this year.

The SBI investigation shows Buffaloe allegedly committed a range of crimes against the girl, from sexual intercourse to sending photos of his genitalia.

He faces the following charges:

Six counts of felony statutory rape that include alleged sexual activity with the child;

One count of indecent liberties with a child that alleges he committed and attempted to commit a lewd and lascivious act with the child;

One count of felony second-degree exploitation of a minor, a count that alleges he received and solicited material that contained a visual representation of a minor engaged in sexual activity and a picture of the child’s sexual organ. The count alleges he asked the victim to send him naked pictures;

One count of felony solicitation of a child by computer. This count alleges soliciting by means of a computer and through texting a meeting for the purpose of committing an unlawful sexual act with the child; and

One count of disseminating obscene material, a charge that alleges he sent a picture of his genitalia to the child.

Buffaloe was originally jailed under a $1.29 million bond. However, during the initial court appearance following his arrest, the bond was reduced to $380,000. That bond was posted and Buffaloe was freed from jail.

Buffaloe has worked with several law enforcement agencies in Northampton and Halifax counties throughout his career, to include the Seaboard Police Department, as well as being a noted canine handler and trainer. He was named in January of 2010 at the Captain of Conway-Severn Rescue Squad, an entity that offers a Juniors (ages 14-17) program in an effort to get young people interested in becoming the next generation of EMTs. He was removed as Rescue Squad Captain following his arrest.

Talley said that Buffaloe is represented by attorney Geoffrey P. Davis with Chichester Law Office in Roanoke Rapids.