Former N.C. Cop Pleads Guilty to Sending Porn on Cellphone to Minors

Oliver Sanders
SHELBY, N.C. — Former North Carolina police officer David Wayne Coburn pleaded guilty to sending pictures of his genitals to two high school students on their cellphones on Friday.

Coburn, a former officer with the Kings Mountain Police Department, admitted to sending the cell phone pictures of his genitalia to a 15-year-old Kings Mountain High School student and to a now 18-year-old girl.

The 18-year-old girl’s mother was an ex-girlfriend of the defendant, which Assistant District Attorney Beth Lari said was how he had access to the girl's cell phone number.

The mother, who N.C. newspaper the Cleveland County Star did not identify by name, reacted Friday after the court decision, saying she wished jail time could have been part of the sentence.

Unfortunately for her, Coburn pleaded guilty to a Class I felony, which in North Carolina carries no jail time if it’s a first offense.

Lari told “The Star” that Coburn received two consecutive 6-to-8-month sentences, is on probation and must undergo a sex offender evaluation and have no contact with either of the victims. The jail time was suspended.

“He got a short, split sentence because the crime is a Class I felony — he can't by law get prison time,” Cleveland County District Attorney Rick Shaffer said. “For a Class I — such as possession of cocaine, forgery and uttering obscenity — with no prior history, there's no prison time.”

Coburn had been hired in July 2004 as a DARE officer at Kings Mountain Middle School and an officer at Kings Mountain High School.

Coburn reportedly pleaded guilty and did not request or receive a plea bargain.

At the time of his arrest on obscenity charges, Coburn had lost his job because of a DUI arrest by the N.C. Highway Patrol two weeks earlier.

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