published Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

McMinn County teen accused of sexually assaulting 10-year-old boy

An 18-year-old from McMinn County has been arrested on charges that he sexually assaulted a 10-year-old boy, authorities say.

William Austin Rowland, 18, of Calhoun, Tenn., was arrested on a charge of aggravated sexual battery, said Sheriff Joe Guy. Rowland was arrested at the McMinn County Courthouse while in court to answer a theft charge, Guy said.

The case involves allegations that Rowland sexually assaulted a 10 year-old boy during a sleepover at a McMinn home in November, Guy said. After being interviewed by sheriff's detectives, Rowland fled to Georgia in a stolen vehicle, the sheriff said.

He was arrested in the vehicle by Georgia authorities the following day and extradited back to McMinn.

Under Times Free Press policy, the victim’s name is not being released.

Rowland is currently being held in the McMinn County Justice Center on a $20,000 bond awaiting an appearance in criminal court on April 2.

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