A former social worker who had initially faced accusations of engaging in sexuaI conduct with a 13-year-old boy is now in custody and additionally charged with two felony counts of intimidating a crime victim/witness by force or threat after she posted bond and returned to the victim’s home with a gun, threatening violence to the boy’s mother because she reportedly ruined her life.
Payton, who obtained her social worker license in June 2023, found herself in legal trouble following serious allegations. Employed with the NYAP, Payton was reported to the police in late September on allegations of engaging in unlawful sexuaI conduct with a 13-year-old boy, a client she was supposed to counsel for mental health.
The mother of the alleged victim played a crucial role in bringing these charges to light. She contacted authorities after discovering messages and videos on her son’s phone that indicated illicit sexuaI contact between Payton and her son. This discovery led to Payton’s initial arrest, with the police department finding evidence that supported these claims. Payton was charged with sexuaIIy abusing the minor at least twice in September. Upon her arrest, she was booked into jail and was later released on a substantial bond of $500,085, under strict conditions that included no contact with the victim or unsupervised contact with minors.
However, the situation escalated when Payton reportedly violated these conditions when she appeared at the victim’s home, threatening to shoot the boy’s mother and herself. This alarming incident, where she was seen on camera with a gun, led to her re-arrest on charges of intimidating a crime victim/witness by force or threat. Consequently, her bond was revoked, and she faced additional legal challenges.
NYAP, where Payton was employed as a counselor, terminated her employment. The organization expressed its sadness over the incident, emphasizing its commitment to cooperating with authorities.