New Smyrna Beach, FL - A retired New Smyrna Beach High School teacher is in the Volusia County Jail, charged with soliciting a minor for sex. The Volusia Sheriff's Child Exploitation Unit arrested 61-year-old James Benefield yesterday (June 16) afternoon on the high school's campus where he's been working as a volunteer.
The investigation began this week after detectives were contacted by a family member of the juvenile female victim about a possible sex offense. When detectives confronted Benefield with the allegation, he admitted to having the conversaton with the victim. The victim knows who Benefield is but not through his work as a volunteer at NSBHS.
Benefield is charged with soliciting sexual activity with a child, child abuse and providing false information to law enforcement officers during a felony investigation. He's being held without bond.
This is an active investigation. The Sheriff’s Office Child Exploitation Unit investigators ask that anyone who believes they have been victimized by Benefield is asked to contact them at 386-323-3574.