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Ashley James Crouse
courtesy of Caldwell Co. Sheriff's Office

Granite Falls Church Employee Charged with Sexual Exploitation of a Minor [UPDATED 11/06 3:10 p.m.]

51-year-old Ashley James Crouse of Helton Road in Granite Falls was arrested Friday (November 3) by Caldwell County Sheriff’s Officers. He was charged with four felony counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor.

He was arrested after Sheriff’s Officers, with assistance from Agents with the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, executed search warrants Friday at Crouse’s residence and at his place of employment, the New Vision Baptist Church on Grace Chapel Road in Granite Falls. The search warrants were issued after the Sheriff’s Office received an exploitation cybertip from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children. Investigators collected items from both locations to be forensically examined for material depicting child exploitation.

Following his arrest, Crouse was jailed in the Caldwell County Detention Facility under a $1,000,000 secured bond. A first appearance in District Court date was scheduled today (November 6) in Lenoir.

Additional charges are expected.