Laura Williams, Office of
Public Affairs & Media Relations
RETIRED NSB HIGH SCHOOL TEACHER ARRESTED
Oak Hill Man, 61, Charged With Soliciting Sex From Minor
Volusia sheriff’s detectives have arrested a retired teacher from New Smyrna Beach High School who currently volunteers at the campus and charged him with soliciting a minor for sex.
James Benefield, 61, of Oak Hill was arrested Tuesday afternoon by detectives from the agency’s Child Exploitation Unit.
Detectives began investigating this week after being alerted by a family member of the juvenile female victim about a possible sex offense.
When detectives confronted Benefield with the allegation of soliciting the minor for sex, he admitted to having the conversation with the juvenile.
The suspect is known to the victim, but not through his current role as a volunteer at New Smyrna Beach High School.
Benefield was arrested at home Tuesday and transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail. He is charged with soliciting sexual activity with a child, child abuse and providing false information to law enforcement officers during a felony investigation. He remains in custody with no bail allowed.
The investigation is continuing. Anyone who believes they may have been victimized by this defendant or others is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Office Child Exploitation Unit at (386) 323-3574.
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