Freeman faces new sodomy charge

Published 7:51 pm Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Troy man accused of sexually harassing juveniles faces a fifth felony charge.

Tripp Freeman, 20, was charged with his third sodomy first-degree charge on Tuesday, bringing the total felony charges against him to five. He also faces two charges of enticement of a child.

The incidents all involve acts against juveniles, law enforcement officers have said, and the incidents are said to have taken place between March 2005 and April 29 of this year.

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Freeman, a former scorekeeper for the Troy Parks and Recreation Department, was being held in the Pike County Jail on a $243,000 bond.

He also faces six misdemeanor charges.

The latest sodomy charge stems from an incident said to have taken place on or around March 7, 2008.

Freeman was first arrested on May 11 for a harassment charge stemming from an incident involving a 13-year-old boy at the Pike County Relay for Life event. The child’s parents filed charges and encouraged other parents to talk to their children about possible contact with Freeman.

Since then, Freeman has been named the suspect in six misdemeanor charges and the five felony offenses.

Freeman was banned from the city’s recreational facilities after the initial charge.

The first sodomy incident is said to have taken place in February 2007 at Bush Memorial Baptist Church. Freeman would have been 17 at the time. The next sodomy incident is said to have taken place in March 2005.

The other two felony charges are separate incidents of enticement of a child, one alleged in 2009 and the other April 29 of this year. Pike County Circuit Clerk records indicate both took place at Franklin Ball Field.

Freeman faces four misdemeanor harassment charges: one from the Relay for Life incident; one filed on May 14, from an alleged March incident; and one filed May 17, from an incident said to have taken place in late January or early February. Freeman also is charged with two indecent exposure offenses, one alleged in 2009 at a Troy ball field and another earlier this year.

The sodomy first-degree charges are Class A felonies and according to the Alabama Criminal Code carry sentences of 10 years to life. Enticement, which is described as someone with “lascivious” intent attempting to invite a child under the age of 16 into a vehicle, home or other private place for the purpose of sodomy or sexual intercourse, is a class C felony that carries a penalty of one to 10 years, if convicted.

Freeman has appeared in court once, where his bond was reduced on some of his charges.

Freeman must be indicted by a Grand Jury before he is tried in court. The next Pike County Grand Jury won’t be until October.