Yesterday, FTVLive told you about the arrest of WLBT Weather Anchor Eric Law on charges of having sex with a girl under the age of 16.
So far, court papers have not said how old the girl is, but if convicted, Law could be going away for a very long time.
Matt Baldridge, the attorney for Law said his client allowed police to conduct a search of Law’s home at 284 Belle Rose Circle on Thursday morning. Law surrendered to police about 11 a.m. after being told of the charges — two counts of sexual battery and two counts of gratification of lust.
“At this point, we’re cooperating,” Baldridge said. “It’s early in the investigation. These are serious charges, and we don’t know the substance of the allegations.
“He is pleading innocent at this point in time,” he said.
Law was released from police custody on a $200,000 bond — $50,000 for each charge — Thursday afternoon, shortly after appearing in Madison Municipal Court before Judge Dale Danks.
During the initial appearance that lasted less than 10 minutes, Law, wearing a red hoodie, jeans and tennis shoes, answered yes to a series of questions from Danks about understanding his legal rights.
During the court session, investigator Vicky Curry said Rankin County authorities contacted Madison police March 5 to investigate a case about “multiple counts of inappropriate conduct” involving a juvenile within the Madison city limits.
So far, Baldridge said, neither he nor Law are aware of specific allegations. Asked if Law acknowledges knowing the reported victim, his attorney said: “I don’t believe her identity has been revealed to us yet.
“Once we know the exact allegations, we’ll know how to represent him,” he said. “There is ample time to find out what is alleged.”
Baldridge said he expects the case to be presented to an upcoming Madison County grand jury.
WLBT officials said Law, who has worked at the station since 2004, has been suspended until further notice.
Each count of the sexual battery charges carries a potential penalty of up to 30 years in jail and a $10,000 fine, while each count of the gratification of lust charges carries a potential penalty of 15 years in jail and/or $5,000 in fines.
Sexual battery charges involve sexual intercourse with a minor. Gratification of lust charges involve inappropriate handling, rubbing or touching of a minor.