BAXTER COUNTY, Ark. – A Mountain Home man and a registered sex offender have been arrested on felony charges related to a sex crime committed against a juvenile male.
The arrest comes after an investigation into a complaint to the Sheriff’s office they received on August 5.
The mother of a 15-year-old reported that the child told her that 59-year-old David Carleton had molested him while swimming at the Robinson Point Campground in July.
According to the Sheriff’s office, the child was subsequently interviewed about the incident. It was alleged that when Carleton and the child were swimming, Carleton forcefully grabbed the child’s private parts, and then the child pushed Carleton away.
The child explained to investigators that Carleton had been buying him and his brother’s toys and other items prior to the event. It was said by the Sheriff’s office that Carleton would often take the children fishing on Norfork and Bull Shoals Lakes and also on the White River, and they had been swimming together previously as well.
Carleton also allegedly attempted to grab the child’s private area on one other occasion but had been pushed away.
Once Carleton became aware of the complaint against him, and while the investigation was underway, he allegedly confronted the complaining party and said to her, “payback time… you thought you got me but I got you” and was laughing maniacally while yelling at her. The child overheard this threat and then reported that Carleton had also previously threatened him saying he was going to “shoot him while he was in his fort” and made another threat to do something of a sexual nature.
A bench warrant for felony Terroristic Threatening was then issued, and it was served on Carleton on August 7 while the investigation was still ongoing. Carleton was booked at the Detention Center and then released on a $10,000 bond on the threatening charge.
Carleton lives next door to the child victim. Carleton is registered as a low level 2-sex offender.
At the conclusion of the investigation into the sex offense complaint, a bench warrant was issued for the arrest of Carleton was August 12 for Sexual Assault in the Fourth Degree and a separate warrant for Intimidating a Witness, both felony crimes.
Carleton surrendered himself to the Baxter County Detention Center on August 13 and was arrested on those warrants. He was again released after posting bond, which was set at $15,000 on those two charges. Carleton will appear before the court on August 27 to answer to all three charges, which are:
- Terroristic Threatening – Felony
- Sexual Assault in the Fourth Degree – Felony
- Intimidating A Witness – Felony