Grand jury to hear case against Virginia man
By Jack Latta
PRESTONSBURG — Charges against a Virginia man arrested last week on sex-related charges will be heard by a grand jury following a preliminary hearing Tuesday.
Earnest Bradley Hall Jr., 43, of Bristol, Va., appeared in Floyd County District Court Tuesday as the case against him was presented during a preliminary hearing.
During the hearing, Floyd County Sheriff’s Deputy Steve Montgomery explained provided testimony to the court regarding the night in question, when Hall was allegedly found in a parked car at Middle Creek Battlefield engaged in a sexual act with a juvenile male.
Montgomery told the court that he found the two while he was patrolling near the battlefield. He said he noticed a black SUV parked near the rear of the parking lot. When Montgomery approached the vehicle, he told the court that he witnessed Hall laying across the 17-year-old juvenile male, engaging in oral sex.
Montgomery also told the court that the juvenile’s phone was sent to the FBI for investigation, and that he received a report from Kimberly Kidd, that the phone was the “mother load” of sexually explicit images and text messages, and that it contained “penises galore.”
Hall is charged with one count of use of a minor under 18 in a sexual performance, first-degree unlawful transaction with a minor, and providing an officer with a false name or address.
Hall’s attorney argured during the hearing that, because the age of consent in Kentucky is 16, the case against Hall should be dismissed because there was no audience for which to perform. The commonwealth countered that the use of a public parking lot constituted a public performance, and the deputy could be considered the audience.
District Judge Jimmy R. Marcum agreed with the Commonwealth, and overruled the defense’s motion to dismiss, before remanding the matter to a grand jury. He also stated that Hall’s bond would remain the same.
County Attorney Keith Bartley told The Times last week that his office is currently gathering more information about Hall’s criminal background, and he expects that more charges will be forthcoming.
Hall is a registered sex offender in Virginia. According to the Virginia State Police sex offender registry, Hall, who was on probation in Virginia, was registered in 2007, and then re-registered in January of this year. Hall was convicted in May 2007 of two counts of sodomy with a minor. A warrant for Hall’s arrest has been issued from the state of Virginia.
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