UPDATE: Sex offender charged with fondling young girls makes Kennedy Plea

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UPDATE 4/26/17 @ 1:15 p.m.
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A man charged with fondling two young girls near a school playground has made a Kennedy Plea.

Henry Duncan was sentenced Wednesday to 5 to 25 years in prison.

Duncan was also sentenced to 25 years supervision after his release from prison.

He faced two counts of sexual assault for an incident near Barboursville Elementary School in August 2015.



UPDATE 9/1/15 @ 8:05 p.m.
BARBOURSVILLE, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Barboursville Police say the registered sex offender from Summers County, West Virginia, charged with fondling two young girls near a school playground has a lengthy criminal history.

Investigators say Henry Duncan has been charged more than 90 times, and more than a dozen of those were for felony charges.

Duncan had just recently been released from parole, according to Barboursville Police, following his conviction in a similar case in 2013. Duncan was sentenced in February to one to three years on felony sexual assault after police in Beckley say he inappropriately touched three girls while they were shopping inside a store. Because he had served more than 400 days in jail following the charges, the Raleigh County Prosecutor says Duncan was released for time served.

"Apparently, he served his time, got out in February and got off parole in June," Barboursville Police Detective Greg Lucas said. "{Duncan} has registered as a sex offender. He was in compliance with his registry."

But just months after being freed from jail, police say he was once again preying on young children.

"it's heart-wrenching," West Virginia State Police Sgt. Michael Divita said. "It makes your heart sad that someone is capable of doing something to a child."

Duncan is now required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life, and could possibly be upgraded to "predator" status. He would then have to report to troopers every three months. Despite his past crimes, State Police admit they can't keep a constant watch on Duncan.

"A criminal will be a criminal if they want to be," Sgt. Divita said. "He may be properly registered in his home, but they're free to travel."

Duncan faces two counts of felony sexual assault for the incident near Barboursville Elementary school. He also faces several charges, including indecent exposure, after the situation at the Huntington Mall.

Duncan is set to appear in Cabell County court next week for a preliminary hearing.



ORIGINAL STORY 8/31/15 @ 11 p.m.
BARBOURSVILLE, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A registered sex offender from Summers County has been arrested in Barboursville for allegedly fondling two young girls near a school playground.

Henry Timberlake Duncan, 37, was arrested Wednesday night.

Barboursville Police charged Duncan with two counts of felony Sexual Abuse, Misdemeanor Indecent Exposure, Misdemeanor Obstructing and Misdemeanor Fleeing in a Vehicle.

According to the criminal complaint, the two girls, ages 9 and 13, were walking with another young girl in 700 block of Central Avenue about 6 p.m. when Duncan “forcibly and sexually fondled” the two girls.

Barboursville Police say Duncan was identified from outside surveillance cameras at the Police Department, which is across the street from the school. He was also identified by witnesses.

"We'd like to assure parents of kids in our neighborhood that this was an isolated incident," Detective Greg Lucas with the Barboursville Police Department said.

Duncan was not arrested until later that evening after a loss prevention officer at a mall department store saw him preforming a sex act in the juniors department at the store.

Police say he then fled from officers. He was later found hiding behind a dumpster at an automotive store along Mall Road. Police say Duncan resisted arrest and had to be physically restrained.

Duncan is being held in the Western Regional Jail.

This is not first time Duncan has been accused of this type of incident.

In December 2013, he was arrested and charged with molesting young girls who were shopping inside a department store in Beckley, W.Va.

According to published reports, in December 2014 Duncan pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit a felony. He was originally charged with several courts of sexual assault in the case.

In February, he was sentenced to one to three years on the charges and given credit for time served. He was also ordered to register as lifetime sex offender.

Parent Jamie Nelson, who we talked with as she was playing with her daughter in Barboursville, says it's a disturbing example of why talking with children about these things is so important.

"I let her know there are bad people out here and that she does need to stay right with Mommy and hold my hand because anything could happen," Nelson said.

Detective Lucas says Duncan claimed he was in Barboursville on business.

Also according to police, court documents and published reports, Duncan has a long criminal history that includes a dozen convictions.

His preliminary hearing on the charges is set for next week.

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