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Teens arrested for false allegations against trooper

Saturday, August 21, 2010

BRAZIL -- A Clay County man and his juvenile girlfriend have been arrested by Indiana State Police after making false allegations of sexual battery against a trooper assigned to the Putnamville Post.

Christopher C. Harbaugh, 19, of Poland was taken into custody at 3:30 p.m. Friday on S.R. 340 west of Brazil in Clay County.

He was taken to the Clay County Justice Center on a warrant issued from Clay County Circuit Court for one count of false informing, Class B misdemeanor.

Harbaugh's bond was set at $5,000 with 10 percent allowed.

His 16-year-old girlfriend was not jailed, but summoned into the Clay County Juvenile Justice system to answer to the charge. She also resides in Poland.

The allegations stem from a traffic stop that occurred on July 21 around 2:42 p.m. near the 34 mile marker of I-70, when Harbaugh made an unauthorized u-turn.

His vehicle was then stopped by Indiana State Police Senior Trooper Homer McFadden, and Harbaugh was issued a traffic summons for illegal u-turn on the interstate.

On July 30, the juvenile female made allegations of inappropriate touching during the traffic stop by McFadden to Indiana State Police officials.

A subsequent investigation was conducted by First Sgt. Jeff Hearon of the Criminal Investigation Division at the Putnamville Post.

During his nearly 20 days of investigation, it was determined that the allegations were false.

Assisting during the investigation were Indiana State Police Detective Sam Stearley and the Clay County Prosecutor's Office. The investigation is closed and no further actions will be taken.

McFadden is a 10-year veteran of the Indiana State Police.

The Indiana State Police thoroughly investigate all accusations of misconduct by their employees and are committed to ensuring the trust and confidence of their men and women to the citizens of Indiana.

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Nothing good can come from a 16 year old with a 19 year old boyfriend.

-- Posted by mad-mom on Sat, Aug 21, 2010, at 7:38 AM

I remember this guy in high school, he was an idiot then too

-- Posted by hoosierloser on Sun, Aug 22, 2010, at 8:17 PM

First of all Chris is 18 and his girlfriend will be 17 in less than a month. Also the girlfriend is the one who made the report,not him, but since he is an adult he is the one who gets his picture plastered all over the papers and news. Before passing judgement you need to know all of the facts, and you sure wont get the correct ones from the media. They can't even get his age right. Also I know this kid... and he is a good kid! Just in a bad situation!

-- Posted by notpassingjudgement on Mon, Aug 23, 2010, at 10:15 AM
Response by Banner Graphic:
Christopher Harbaugh's age was listed as 19 in the press release the Banner Graphic received from the Indiana State Police. All the information in the story came from that press release.

Nothing good can come from a 16 year old with a 18 year old boyfriend.

-- Posted by mad-mom on Mon, Aug 23, 2010, at 11:15 AM

I don't think their age is really the issue. Lying is. One thing I do not understand is why is the male in trouble if it was the female who made the false allegations?

And, even though the investigation proved that nothing happened, even the remote start of this allegation can ruin an officer, and this officer has a family of his own to take care of.

-- Posted by Greencastle7 on Mon, Aug 23, 2010, at 3:16 PM

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