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Suspect in Urban Air solicitation case, faced prior sexual assault charges


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Questions remain about how Urban Air Adventure Park hired Claude Finch with his past criminal charges.

The new arrest affidavit says Finch was a safety manager at the trampoline park.

Currently, Finch is facing charges for solicitation of a minor.

The affidavit says Chattanooga Police responded to Urban Air on January 19th for an "Attempted Child Fondling" report.

Finch led the 10-year-old victim to an area not accessible to the public and out of surveillance video view. This was confirmed by Urban Air's General Manager, Morgan Young, according to the release.

The victim's mother told police an employee asked to grope the victim's buttocks in exchange for $60 worth of arcade game cards, according to the affidavit.

Young confirmed that Finch was the Safety Manager for the business.

Finch was seen on surveillance video fleeing the scene on foot before police arrived, says the affidavit.

Chattanooga Police arrested Finch on Standifer Gap Road Tuesday night around 10:35 p.m.

"We do a background check on all of our management positions, and so there was nothing flagged in the background check..."

That's from a voicemail we got from Young.

We did our own background check to see if Finch's pending charges would have shown up.

Our background check, through the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, showed all off Finch's previous charges.


This is not Finch's first time facing charges. Finch previously faced sexual assault charges in 2021 after multiple incidents on the campus of Southern Adventist University.

A female student at SAU reported Finch following her in a car while she was on a run. Finch exited the vehicle, grabbed her from behind, and groped and fondled her.

She was able to fight him off and get away, then ran toward the dormitories and called for help.

A release says a second SAU student had reported two unwanted encounters with Finch to the school's Campus Safety Department.

The second victim told officers she was driving through campus trying to get away from Finch, who she says was following her in his own vehicle, and that she was "scared for her life."

Those reports were not forwarded to Collegedale Police until after Finch was charged with sexual assault. Finch was banned from SAU's campus.

Collegedale Police spokesperson, Jamie Heath, says Finch made bond for his previous charges, which was approximately $60,000.

Heath also says Finch's case left Collegedale and went through Grand Jury.

"Other than his ban from the SAU campus, if there are any other restrictions on Mr. Finch they would be through the county court system not ours," says Heath."

His cases are now in Hamilton County Criminal Court, and he has a scheduled court date of March 22nd, 2023.


Urban Air didn't open until almost a year later.

We contacted an Urban Air spokesperson about what specific kind of background check they used, but they wouldn't tell us.

However, on their website Urban Air describes those background checks as thorough.

We asked Chattanooga Assistant Police Chief Glenn Scruggs what background checks through businesses typically show.

"Probably would depend on the level of background checks that the business ran," says Scruggs. "But I can say that the things that showed up on that background check were there when they reviewed it.... you've got to take that up with the business."

We spoke to a mother who was with the family when the little girl ran out crying.

"We don't feel safe enough to go into Urban Air just because of the fact that they neglected to do a thorough background check for someone that was working with children," says the anonymous mother.

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Depend on us to keep you updated as we learn more.

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