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Judge refuses bond request
Judge denies request for bond from Spotsylvania man accused of child molestation

 Hale
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Date published: 9/28/2012

BY KEITH EPPS

A judge wasted little time Wednesday in denying bond to a Spotsylvania County man accused of repeatedly sexually molesting two young girls.

Sean Stephen Hale, 41, was in Spotsylvania Circuit Court seeking to be released on bond pending his Oct. 23 trial.

Hale is charged with 25 offenses, including multiple counts of rape, object sexual penetration, forcible sodomy and producing child pornography.

Police alleged that he had been molesting one of his victims at least seven years, starting when she was 4.

Hale was initially arrested in May when one of the victims, now 11, went to school with bruises. She told a counselor that Hale had hit her and Child Protective Services began a child abuse investigation.

The child later called her mother in Arizona and told her that Hale had been sexually molesting her for years, including twice in April. The mother called police and the expanded investigation led to Hale's arrest.

Detective Sue Cantrell-Turner's investigation led to a second victim, 12, who lived in the same trailer park as Hale when she was 9 and was friends with the first victim. The child told police she was molested frequently in 2008 and 2009, and the attacks stopped only after she moved away.

Police found a box in Hale's home with love letters to the second victim and a picture of Hale and the child kissing.

Prosecutor Crystal Montague-Holland said police eventually seized Hale's computer and found 31 inappropriate pictures of one of the victims.

There were more than 150 other pictures on the computer depicting child pornography involving unidentified children.

Montague-Holland said Hale is "dangerous to any child anywhere."

Defense attorney Sarah Abernathy argued for Hale to be released on bond, but Judge J. Howe Brown quickly ruled against it.

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404
Email: kepps@freelancestar.com