Ex-trooper arrested on sex charges
Former Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper Cameron Gladd, who also had been an outstanding four-sport athlete at Clinton High School, was charged Thursday with eight felonies involving sexual improprieties with two different teenage girls.
Gladd, 29, was a science teacher at Sweetwater High School in Beckham County at the time of the alleged offenses. One of the girls was 16 and the other 18 at the time, and both were still students at Sweetwater. An affidavit written by OSBI Special Agent Dannie Sanders says the 16-year-old, in fact, was a student of Gladd’s, and the 18-year-old had been at the time charged acts involving her took place.
The younger girl was a sophomore and the older one a senior.
Charges are as follows:
Count 1, Use of Technology to Solicit a Minor for Sexual Conduct; Count 2, Violation of the Computer Crimes Act; Count 3, Rape by Instrumentation; Counts 4 and 5, Forcible Oral Sodomy; Counts 6, 7 and 8, Sexual Battery.
Gladd graduated from Clinton High School in 2008.
He was employed as a teacher at Sweetwater in 2017. Information in Sanders’ affidavit indicates the charged sexual offenses started sometime that school year and the last one occurred two weeks ago.
Sweetwater Superintendent Casey Reed contacted the Beckham County Sheriff’s Office on Jan. 17, 2019, reporting inappropriate text messages between Gladd and the 16-year-old. Sanders said in his affidavit the girl admitted sending and receiving inappropriate sexual messages with the accused, some of which were received while she was sitting in his class at Sweetwater. The affidavit included some sent on Jan. 17, the day Reed contacted the Sheriff’s Office.
Count 5, one of the forcible oral sodomies, allegedly happened between Thanksgiving and Christmas of 2018. The affidavit says the 16-year-old met Gladd southeast of Sweetwater and got in his vehicle where the act was performed.
All three of the sexual batteries are alleged to have occurred between June 1, 2018, and Jan. 16, 2019, again with the 16-year-old the victim. The affidavit says the first time was during the summer of ’18 and one of the others was in the school gym during basketball practice when Gladd took the girl in a room to wrap her ankles but had her shut the door and tried to kiss her.
The 18-year-old is listed as the victim in Counts 3 and 4, the rape by instrumentation and one of the forcible oral sodomies. Sanders interviewed her Jan. 25 this year, and she told him she had been a student of Gladd’s when she was a senior during the 2017-18 school year. She said they began texting and messaging each other and the messages became sexual in nature.
Sometime between April 28 and the end of the school year, she continued, they met on a country road near the intersection of Beckham County Roads 1130 and 1790 and she got into his Jeep. She said the acts listed in Counts 2 and 3 were performed at that time.
While some of the charged acts appear to have been consensual on the girls’ part, they would be illegal if they involved the 16-year-old and probably illegal if Gladd was in a position of authority over the 18-year-old.
During his years at CHS, the accused played on three state championship football teams. He also won a state championship in wrestling his senior year and was state runner-up three other times.
In baseball he played the outfield and batted No. 5 in the lineup – normally one of the power-hitting slots – and had a batting average exceeding .400 his senior year. His fourth sport was track and field, and he finished No. 5 in the shot put at the state meet his senior year.
Following his graduation, Gladd received a wrestling scholarship to the University of Central Oklahoma.
Until these charges were filed, he apparently had an outstanding record. Just last August he received the Highway Patrol’s Purple Heart award for injuries received in a 2014 auto accident while on duty.
It was presented by Capt. Brad Neidy, commander of Troop H of the patrol, at the Sweetwater School in front of students, fellow teachers and administrators, plus eight or nine troopers who had served with him.
The accident had occurred Nov. 16, 2014, on Interstate 40 when he was sitting in his patrol unit and it was hit by a semi which slid on ice while he was working a previous accident.
“Cameron basically fought a two-year battle with pain and underwent multiple surgeries before he retired,” Neidy said at the time of the award. “He was a good trooper.”
A story printed in the Clinton Daily News nearly a month after his patrol car was hit said he had already undergone four spinal surgeries and had nerve damage in his left foot.
Gladd was a deputy briefly with the Custer County Sheriff’s Office before being accepted to the OHP Training Academy and earning his trooper’s certification.
He was arrested Thursday and released on $100,000 bond set by Associate District Judge Michelle Roper. She originally set the bond at $500,000 but later lowered it to $100,000.
“We booked him into the Beckham County Detention Center and he was immediately bonded out,” said Sheriff Derek Manning.
Manning said his office and the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation worked together on the case.
“We took the initial report from Sweetwater Schools,” he said. “Once we determined the type of case it was, we requested OSBI assistance. When the warrants came down, I contacted Mr. Gladd’s attorney and offered him the opportunity to turn himself in, which he did.”
His first court appearance is scheduled March 4 at 9 a.m.
Gladd also is the subject of a protective order filed Jan. 18 by a Sweetwater man. It is to remain in effect until a hearing scheduled April 11.