A man accused of sex crimes from 2011 and 1998, both involving 14-year-old girls, pleaded guilty Thursday in the two cases.
Charles W. Peyton, 63, of East Irvine Street, pleaded guilty to first-degree sexual abuse in the 2011 incident and an amended charge of third-degree rape in the 1998 case.
Peyton originally had been indicted on a charge of first-degree rape in the older case.
Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Jennifer Smith recommended a sentence of three years for the rape offense and two years for the sexual abuse charge. She asked that the penalties run consecutively for a total of five years.
Peyton was arrested Dec. 12 by Richmond police and charged with first-degree sexual abuse after he reportedly “engaged in inappropriate touching” with a 14-year-old girl while giving her a ride home, according to Richmond Police Chief Larry Brock.
During his change of plea hearing, Judge William Clouse told Peyton to explain what he did.
“I patted a girl on the leg,” Peyton said.
Clouse said that statement wasn’t an adequate statement of guilt, and Peyton elaborated that he had rubbed his hand on the inside of the girl’s thigh.
At the time he was arrested in the 2011 sex crime, Peyton already was being investigated in connection with a similar 1998 incident involving another girl, according to Brock.
During the hearing, Peyton admitted that in 1998 he “took a young girl for a ride in the country and had intercourse with her.”
Clouse asked him how old the girl was, and Peyton said she was 14.
There was some question about whether Peyton would be required to serve 85 percent of the entire five-year sentence before becoming eligible for parole, or just 85 percent for the most recent crime, which has a recommended sentence of two years.
Because the third-degree rape incident happened in 1998, the sentencing guidelines at the time only required sex offenders to serve 20 percent of their sentences before becoming parole-eligible.
Clouse said the parole board would have to make the determination of when Peyton was eligible for early release.
“There is a possibility that all five years will be treated at 85 percent,” Clouse told Peyton.
Peyton’s sentencing is set for 1:30 p.m. Nov. 1.
Richmond man sentenced to four years on child porn charges
Despite a plea for probation, Madison Circuit Court Judge William Clouse sentenced a man who admitted to possessing child pornography to four years in prison.
The Kentucky State Police arrested Sean M. Burkhead, 36, in March following a yearlong investigation after receiving a report he had child pornography.
Troopers seized his computers with a search warrant and found four images depicting nude girls under 18 and one picture showing an infant involved in a sex act, according to the KSP.
Burkhead pleaded guilty in June to four courts of possessing child pornography. The prosecutor recommended one year for each charge to be served consecutively for a total of four years.
Bulkhead’s attorney, Wes Browne, told the judge that his client struggled with this “demon” following his honorable discharge from serving in combat with the U.S. armed forces.
Browne said Burkhead had been sexually abused as a child and was deeply ashamed of his actions. His pregnant wife has stood by him, Browne pointed out.
Browne asked that Burkhead be granted probation so he could support his family and seek out-patient sex offender treatment.
Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Jennifer Smith opposed probation.
“His demon here is that he views children as sexual beings, including infants,” Smith said.
Clouse agreed that probation wasn’t an option.
“If he steps wrong again, he hurts a child,” Clouse said.
Clouse ordered that Burkhead receive sex offender treatment while in prison. The judge said he orders the treatment in cases like this, and he hopes it works.
“I can’t throw people away,” Clouse said.
Upon leaving prison, Burkhead will be required to register as a sex offender for the next 20 years.
Sarah Hogsed can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 624-6694.