Candidate for US Senate faces sex charge

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate is charged with solicitation of a minor and his case has been bound over to a grand jury.

Authorities say the alleged incident occurred in May 2011, when a 7-year-old girl riding her bike in front of the Johnson City apartment of Thomas K. Owens was invited inside.

The 36-year-old then allegedly hugged the girl, unzipped his pants, and asked her to perform a sex act. The girl ran home and told her mother, who notified police.

Owens told investigators the girl had been in his apartment. As for the allegation, he stated: "I have a problem with that," but did not elaborate.

Owens' attorney told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he had just gotten the case was still reviewing it. The case went to the grand jury last month.


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