Wednesday, April 29, 2020
A former Commonwealth's attorney pleaded guilty to more than two dozen child sex crime charges.
Last August, Timothy Carnes was charged with 13 counts of taking indecent liberties with a child and another 13 counts for procuring children online.
Carnes entered a guilty plea on Wednesday. He was an assistant Commonwealth's attorney from 2004 to 2008.
The Commonwealth Attorney's Office did not take on Carnes' case. A special prosecutor was appointed instead.
His sentencing is set for July 17.
From The Virginia Pilot on the charges
A former Norfolk prosecutor repeatedly tried to lure someone he thought was a 14-year-old girl into having sex with him, saying he was older and could teach her, a prosecutor said.
Timothy Scott Carnes, 41, communicated with “Brittney” in an online chatroom called “No Rules-just kin.ky...,” at least 13 times between May 30 and Aug. 3, special prosecutor T. Marie Walls said.
During their conversations, Carnes sent videos of him masturbating to Brittney, and tried to coax the teen into sending him photos of her, Walls told a judge Friday, arguing why Carnes shouldn’t be released from jail while he waits for his case to end.
In fact, Carnes was chatting with a Norfolk police detective.
On Aug. 22, Carnes was charged with more than 20 felonies, including trying to take indecent liberties with a child, as well as committing a sexual offense with a minor online.
On Friday, he went to court to try to get a bond. Judge Clark Daugherty denied him one, sending Carnes back to jail to await his next scheduled court hearing in October.
During Friday’s hearing, Walls said Carnes asked “Brittney” if she had sex with a lot of guys and if she liked it. He also wanted her to describe how she masturbated.
On June 5, he sent a video of a man from the waist down, masturbating. The detective asked if it was him, and he said it was, Walls said.
On July 7, Carnes indicated he wanted Brittney to participate in sexual activity with his wife and him, Walls said. Carnes’ wife is not accused of any wrongdoing.
Carnes told Brittney she needed to have sex with an older guy because he could show her how, Walls said.
All the while, the undercover detective posing as Brittney kept reminding Carnes she was only 14, Walls said. “Brittney” told Carnes she’d just moved to Norfolk and was looking for new friends.
Because the victim in this case, albeit a fictional one, was younger than 15, Carnes was denied bond by default. The law says such defendants must prove they’re not a danger to the public or a flight risk to be granted bond.
Defense attorney James Broccoletti said Carnes never met or tried to meet with the person he thought was Brittney, so there were no “hands on” encounters between Carnes and any minors.
Broccoletti said his client was willing to be under house arrest at the home of his mother, who’s also a lawyer with the Social Security Administration. She testified she’d disable all internet access at her Virginia Beach home. Broccoletti also said his client had strong ties to the community and was willing to go through psychosexual counseling.
Daugherty was unconvinced.
Carnes worked as a prosecutor in the Norfolk Commonwealth’s Attorney’s office from November 2004 to May 2008, spokeswoman Amanda Howie said after Carnes was arrested Aug. 22.
Because people in the office know Carnes, the court appointed a special prosecutor: Walls, a deputy commonwealth’s attorney from Suffolk.
Since 2009, Carnes has worked as an attorney for the Social Security Administration, according to his LinkedIn profile. He graduated with a bachelor’s from the College of William & Mary in 2000 and a law degree from the University of Richmond in 2004.
On Friday, his mother said he graduated from Cox High School.
The Social Security Administration did not respond to an email asking about Carnes’ employment status and the nature of his job duties.
Norfolk jail officials said Carnes has declined to talk to a reporter about the charges against him.
During one of his first chats with Brittney, Carnes remarked on her age, Walls said.
“You’re too young for this lol,” he told her. “If I were to do something with you, I’d get in trouble.”