CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A local Pennsylvania State Constable is facing over 700 charges relating to human trafficking, according to police.

Chambersburg Police say the arrest of Timothy Raye Heefner, 64, of Chambersburg, comes after a two-year investigation conducted by Chambersburg Police and the Franklin County District Attorney’s Office.

In July 2021, police said they received a report from Franklin County Children and Youth Services. That report alleged Heefner sexually assaulted underage girls.

“When you have that bad apple, it’s disgusting. It hurts the whole profession,” Chambersburg Police Chief Ron Camacho said.

The report kicked off the investigation. Police reviewed social media and phone records, including phone calls between Heefner and women in the Franklin County Jail.

Camacho said these investigations can be challenging because of victims’ reluctance ot come forward. Many of the women had been in jail and struggled with addiction.

“If you’ve been in trouble with the law before, and now you’re a victim, sometimes it’s hard for you to build that trust,” he said. “There’s a lot of stigma that comes with human trafficking.”

Investigators eventually identified over 50 women. Heefner is accused of soliciting them for sexual acts in exchange for money or drugs. He is also accused of paying them to recruit other women and providing transportation and money to buy illegal drugs in exchange for sex.

In November 2022, Franklin County Investigative Grand Jury was formed and began reviewing the case in January 2023. Camacho said this process is part of why the investigation took a couple years.

“Unless your county has a standing grand jury, that’s a time consuming and can be a complicated issue,” he said.

The jury heard from 11 witnesses and Chambersburg Police’s main investigator, Cp. James Iversen. Testimony from victims said Heefner used his position as a constable to threaten them if they did not cooperate. Some victims also said Heefner solicited them for sex when they were underage.

The grand jury’s findings said Heefner targeted these women “due to their addiction and desperation.”

“We find that Timothy Heefner is a predator and has gotten away with sexually victimizing young women in our county for far too long. He believed he was permitted to commit these crimes and that he could get away with it all because his victims were broken, sick, addicted and in the shadows…Heefner believed no one would care and no one would believe these young women, and he was wrong. We believe them…Timothy Heefner must be stopped and he must be held accountable.”

Franklin County Investigative Grand Jury findings

Chief Camacho said closing this case was important “just to kind of send the message that this kind of stuff is not tolerated anymore.”

On Sept. 8, a presentment was requested for charges to be filed:

  • 58 counts of trafficking in individuals
  • 58 counts of involuntary servitude
  • 58 counts of sexual extortion
  • 58 counts of criminal use of a communication facility
  • 58 counts of prostitution and related offenses
  • 41 counts of criminal attempt— of sexual extortion
  • 41 counts of criminal attempt to commit trafficking
  • 41 counts of criminal attempt — involuntary servitude
  • 41 counts of criminal attempt– prostitution and related offenses
  • 1 count of rape
  • 1 count of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse
  • 1 count of sexual assault
  • 1 count of criminal attempt– unlawful contact with minor
  • 1 count of corruption of minors
Timothy Heefner, mugshot via Chambersburg police

According to court documents, Heefner also faces misdemeanor charges that include counts of corruption of minors, counts of indecent assault, over 50 counts of official oppression, 41 counts of criminal attempt– official oppression, and a count of indecent exposure.

In another filing, Heefner is facing 58 counts of sexual extortion.

Heefner is currently in the Franklin County Jail with bail set at $1,250,000.

An investigation is still ongoing and police are asking for anyone who has been victimized to contact them.

According to the Pennsylvania State Constables Association, constables “have the authority in Pennsylvania to arrest by warrant anywhere in the Commonwealth, and to conduct warrantless arrests for felonies and breaches of the peace committed in their presence, including warrantless arrests for felony violations of the drug laws.”

A request for comment was also submitted to the Pennsylvania State Constables Association on Wednesday night.

abc27 News is working to learn more for this story and will have the latest information as it becomes available.

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