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Robert John Tyndell

A 31-year-old Murphy, N.C., man has been charged with multiple counts of sexual assault involving a child under 12 years of age.

Cherokee County Sheriff Derrick Palmer said Robert John Tyndell was charged with statutory first-degree sex offense of a child and two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child related to an investigation that began in Macon County, N.C., and ended with a grand jury presentation in Cherokee County on Nov. 14.

Palmer said the Macon County Department of Social Services opened an investigation in that county where the allegations were initially disclosed and reported to the Cherokee County Department of Social Services and the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office allegations that Tyndell had sexually assaulted a child under the age of 12 at a Murphy address.

Investigators were assisted by Kids Place Child Advocacy Center in Franklin, N.C., Palmer said.

Because of the age of the victims and the sensitive nature of the incident no further information is expected to be released, Palmer said.

"We want to thank all the agencies involved in this investigation," Palmer said in a statement on the arrest. "As always they are some of the most difficult to deal with. Cooperation is always the key in these types of investigations, and this is an excellent example of cooperation between several agencies getting justice for a very bad crime."

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