Deputy fired after investigators say sought sex from minor

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A Blount County deputy charged this week with soliciting sex from a minor in North Carolina has been fired.

Police say 48-year-old James Eugene Patty Jr. drove over the state line to meet with the underage girl in the Asheville area. WBIR-TV reports ( he was arrested Thursday morning on charges of solicitation of a child by computer and jailed in Buncombe County on a $50,000 bond.

Patty, who lives in Maryville Tennessee, was connected to the crime by an Internet Crimes Against Children task force in North Carolina.

On Friday, Blount County Sheriff James Lee Berrong said Patty was terminated shortly after his arrest. Berrong says Patty’s actions “are an embarrassment and a black mark on me and the men and women of the Blount County Sheriff’s Office.”