HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – The next step in a seemingly twisted case happened Wednesday morning when two men charged with multiple counts of child sex abuse had their arraignments.
Carl Herold and his domestic partner, Charles Dunnavant, appeared before Madison County Circuit Judge Chris Comer. The two men are charged with dozens of counts of sodomy, sexual abuse, and conspiracy for allegedly holding a boy captive in their house for eight months. The young boy is currently in therapeutic foster care. “We just want him to be whole and healthy, that’s really what our goal is,” said Gabrielle Helix with the District Attorney’s office, “and our goal is also to protect the community so we have to balance that.” Herold’s court-appointed attorney withdrew from the case. Judge Comer denied a request to lower Dunnavant’s bond.
“He said it was within what he thought was reasonable given what the allegations were and he just denied the motion at this time,” said Jason Scully-Clemmons, also with the DA’s office. Scully-Clemmons says the judge took into account any possible flight risk when making his ruling. Judge Comer did not rule on whether statements from the alleged victim would be used as evidence. The defense argued the child may have been influenced or have mental health problems. Prosecution says their focus is on his well being. “What his counseling is, and whether or not he will be ready and able to testify at the time the court needs to pull this in for trial.” The judge ordered a status conference in November to determine a trial date.