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Mechanicsville man arrested on felony child sex abuse charges accused of possessing, producing child porn

Anonymous tip led to 61-year-old man's arrest, deputies say
Hanover County Sheriff’s Office
Posted at 4:32 PM, Aug 25, 2022

MECHANICSVILLE, Va. – A 61-year-old Hanover County man is behind bars on multiple felony charges for sexual abuse as well as possession and production of child pornography after deputies received an anonymous tip.

Investigators arrested Earl Harris Burnette of Mechanicsville after executing a residential search warrant on Crown Hill Road around 11 a.m. Wednesday.

Burnette is now facing 10 felony charges:

  • One count of forcible sodomy with a child younger than 13
  • Two counts of aggravated sexual battery with a child younger than 13
  • Three counts of possession of child pornography with a child less than 15 years of age
  • Four counts of production of child pornography less than 15 years of age

Officials said most of the charges involve one local minor. However, based on the charges, deputies believe there could be more victims.

As a result, investigators are asking asking anyone with any information to contact them.

“This was an anonymous tip that we received, and even though it’s anonymous, it’s just as important," Lt. James Cooper said. "Even if someone walks in directly, gives us their name and all their information and says they want to be involved. Based on that anonymous tip we were able to build this case.”

Burnette, who WTVR CBS 6 confirmed is a federal employee with the Defense Logistics Agency, is being held without bond at the Pamunkey Regional Jail.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office at 804-365-6140 or the Metro Richmond Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000. You can also download the “P3 Tips” app to submit a tip. Both Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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