A candidate for the Ward 5 seat on the Petal Board of Aldermen has been arrested for lustful touching of a child.
Jasper County Sheriff Randy Johnson said 47-year-old Mannix McLaurin was arrested by the Bay Springs Police Department on March 30 after a probable cause hearing in front of 13th Circuit Court Judge Stanley Sorey. The incident allegedly occurred while McLaurin was on duty at Bay Springs High School, where he serves as a JROTC instructor.
Investigators said a complaint had previously been brought to the school, as well as the West Jasper School District, about the alleged incident approximately a month ago.
McLaurin, who is scheduled to face off against Drew Brickson in the upcoming April 6 general municipal election, was released on a $25,000 bond. The City of Bay Springs Police Department is handling the case.
According to Mississippi law, a person over the age of 18 may be charged with lustful touching of a child if the offender “handles, touches or rubs with hands or any part of his or her body or any member thereof, or with any object, a child under the age of 16 years old.” A probable cause hearing must be held if a public school teacher, sworn law enforcement officer, counselor at an adolescent program or jail officer is charged with a crime while on duty.
McLaurin's booking info can be found here: https://jasperso.com/48-hour-release/. More information will be released as it becomes available.