Branam indicted, leaves teaching profession

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By Susan Sharp

Following a two-week investigation by police, a 30-year education veteran has been indicted by a grand jury.

Last week Jackboro Police Chief Danny Chapman sat before the 12 person panel outlining the case against Harolyn Dean Branam, a Jacksboro Middle School teacher.

Afterwards the jury returned a 10 count sealed indictment charging Branam with three counts of sexual battery and seven counts of assault, the record said.

Of those charges, four of them allege Branam used his position of authority, as a teacher, “to accomplish the sexual contact,” court records read.

In all, there were seven underage female victims, according to the indictment.

On Tuesday, Chapman said it was his understanding Branam had turned himself to authorities on Friday, the day after the indictment was handed down.

Branam later posted a $10,000 bail and was released, jail records said.

“At this time the investigation is closed unless others come forward,” Chapman said.

The chief said that is how the case began, with one victim reporting the allegations to his department. Through the course of the investigation, other victims were discovered, according to Chapman.

While Branam’s legal issues continue it appears his teaching career is over.

In a letter dated March 31 and submitted to the county’s central office of education, Branam resigned from his teaching position. “This letter is to confirm my desire to retire as a teacher in the Campbell County School system effective March 25, 2009,” the hand written correspondence said.

Along with that, Branam tendered an application for early for early retirement benefits.