Brent Lawrence Parton suicide: A Georgia youth sports referee commits suicide a week after being caught in a sexting sting operation involving a 12 year old.
A youth sports referee busted last month in Georgia during an underage sex sting has shot himself dead after being released from jail on bond.
Brent Lawrence Parton, 38, of Canton, was charged with sexual exploitation of children and obscene internet contact after a four-week investigation by the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office. The charges followed the man allegedly believing he was ‘sexting’ with a 12-year-old girl on the web who turned out to be an undercover investigator, AJC reported.
Parton, who worked as a basketball referee for a county youth league, died Monday of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at his home following his release from a county jail after posting $10,500 bond on Feb. 28, sheriff’s spokesman Jay Baker revealed.
Parton also served as an umpire and district director for Dizzy Dean Baseball in Georgia for years, WSB-TV reports.
‘My first thing is, you never know what people do in their private lives,’ the amateur league’s national director, Chris Landry, told WSB-TV. ‘I’m in total shock. I just couldn’t believe it.’
Brent Lawrence Parton: Had passed background check as recently as January.
Parton’s arrest followed the referee being nabbed while on his way to officiate a basketball game at an elementary school in Canton.
Parton was removed from his role in the baseball league following his arrest. He had passed a background check as recently as January, Landry said. Of note, Parton had never been arrested before.
‘If he’s guilty, I’m glad he got caught because I can’t imagine what I would do if it was my granddaughter,’ Landry said.
The director of the county’s Parks and Recreation Department told WSB-TV that Parton, who was not a county employee, would also be banned from officiating its games in the aftermath of the criminal charges.
Funeral services for Parton will be held Saturday at Sardis Baptist Church in Canton, according to his obituary.
Noted the 38 year old man’s obituary, ‘Brent enjoyed coaching football, baseball, and wrestling,’
‘He was a good friend and would do anything for anyone. Brent was always taking care of family and especially loved spending time with his nieces and nephew.’