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Cherokee man sentenced to four years for abusive sexual contact of a minor

ASHEVILLE, N.C. – Forrest Cole Stamper, 28, of Cherokee, N.C., and an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, was sentenced today to 48 months in prison and 15 years of supervised release for abusive sexual contact of a minor in Indian Country, announced Dena J. King, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. U.S. District Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr. also ordered Stamper to register as a sex offender after he is released from prison.

Joining U.S. Attorney King in making today’s announcement is Chief Josh Taylor of the Cherokee Indian Police Department.

Stamper pleaded guilty to the charge on December 1, 2021. According to plea documents and information presented in court, Stamper admitted that on September 6, 2020, he knowingly engaged in unlawful sexual contact with a minor victim who was under the age of 12 at the time of the offense. Stamper admitted to touching the minor, who is also an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, on the minor’s groin and inner thigh. At today’s sentencing hearing, Judge Cogburn imposed on Stamper the statutory maximum penalty for the offense.

Stamper is currently in federal custody and will be transferred to the custody of the federal Bureau of Prisons upon designation of a federal facility.

In making today’s announcement, U.S. Attorney King thanked the Cherokee Indian Police Department for their investigation of the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John Pritchard, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Asheville, prosecuted the case.

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