Former fire chief sentenced for sexual battery

Eric Alvin Phillips, a 29-year-old Flint Hill resident who last year served as chief of the Flint Hill Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department, was sentenced Aug. 27 in Rappahannock county Juvenile and Domestic Relations court on six charges of misdemeanor sexual battery.

He had originally been arrested on felony charges of sexually abusing a juvenile with whom he had a custodial or supervisory relationship, and abduction with intent to defile an underage female, but pleaded guilty to the reduced charges.

Judge Jonathan S. Lynn sentenced him to two years in jail, two years of supervised probation upon release from jail, and two years of unsupervised probation. Phillips was ordered to pay up to $1,500 toward counseling for the victim, and he must register as a sex offender upon release from jail.

Phillips was arrested March 4 by Rappahannock County Sheriff’s Office investigator Shawn Walters after an investigation into the alleged offenses against the unidentified underage female. On April 16, Circuit Court Judge James F. Almand granted a $50,000 secured bond and ordered Phillips to have no contact with the victim or her family and to maintain employment.

Information sought in burglaries

The Rappahannock County Sheriff’s Office is seeking information on two break-ins, and the theft of undisclosed items, that took place between 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13, at two buildings: the Laurel Mills Store in Castleton, and Trinity House, across Gay Street from Trinity Episcopal Church in Washington.

Anyone who might have seen anything at either of the sites on Sept. 13, or who has any information about the burglaries, is asked to call the sheriff’s office at 540-675-5300. You may remain anonymous.

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