A Beaverton, Ore., police officer pleaded not guilty to a child rape charge this morning in Clark County Superior Court.
Christopher R. Warren, 33, of Vancouver, stands accused of first-degree rape of a child. The alleged victim is a 5-year-old relative.
He has retained two attorneys, Louis Byrd of Vancouver and Ernest Warren of Portland, and is free on $250,000 bail.
His trial is tentatively scheduled for Aug. 19.
Friends and family rallied around Warren after he was arrested at his home in central Vancouver.
“The justice system is broken,” Thomas Taylor, one of Warren’s high school friends, told reporters outside the courtroom.
Taylor, of Portland, said friends and family have a website to support Warren at christopherwarrentruthbetold.wordpress.com.
Warren remains on paid administrative leave from his police job. He was temporarily relieved from duty in April, when he was arrested in Washington County, Ore., on suspicion of misusing food stamps.
Court records indicate the child’s mother alerted Vancouver police that the child had disclosed that Warren had fondled the child’s genital area during a bath. In a May 14 interview at Clark County Children’s Justice Center, the child said that Warren also had penetrated the child’s private parts with a pencil, according to a probable cause affidavit.
This isn’t the first time the officer has been accused of such a crime.
Warren was put on paid leave in 2010 while Multnomah County and Washington County authorities investigated allegations that he failed to report suspected child abuse about six years ago involving a friend, The Oregonian reported. The friend, Sugar Ray Black, was convicted earlier in 2010 of sexually abusing three other girls who were 14 or younger.
That same year, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s office also investigated separate claims that Warren had molested a minor girl when he was 17, according to the newspaper.
Prosecutors did not charge Warren with a crime because the victim declined to cooperate, the newspaper reported.