NJ high school ROTC leader charged with inappropriate contact with student

FRANKLINVILLE, N.J. (WPVI) -- A staff sergeant employed at the Delsea Regional High School in the Reserve Officers Training Corps has been charged with criminal sexual contact.

Police say 58-year-old James Merritt surrendered at the Franklin Township Police Department on Tuesday.

According to the charges, Merritt used physical force or coercion to touch an 18-year-old student's intimate parts over the clothing in an ROTC classroom during school hours.

They say he engaged in inappropriate sexual conduct with the student. He also used text message conversation on his cell phone to maintain the relationship.

Merritt has been an employee with the Delsea Regional School District since 2011.

He was suspended from the school and is expected in court on August 22.
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