Community corrections officer accused of sexual exploitation

Published: Jun. 18, 2020 at 6:25 PM EDT
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Police say a community corrections officer sexually exploited a woman he was supervising.

Vermont State Police say Joshua Russ, 35, of Brattleboro, was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of sexual exploitation of an inmate and prostitution.

Investigators say the woman told her parole officer that Russ paid her for oral sex three or four times beginning in January. The alleged incidents happened in his car in a Brattleboro parking lot and at a roadside pull-off in Newfane.

Russ is behind bars and will be arraigned on Friday. He is on paid leave from the Vermont Corrections Department.

The Vermont Department of Corrections Interim Commissioner is now responding to Russ' arrest.

James Baker says he cannot emphasize enough how upsetting the allegations are.

"If these allegations are proven to be true, the trust that is given to us was violated. I find that unacceptable and it will be dealt with internally swiftly," Baker said in a statement.

Baker says Russ worked inside a state prison for a few years before joining Brattleboro Probation and Parole last year.

Russ was placed on leave May 29.