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Former police officer pleads not guilty to multiple charges including fondling, sexual battery


PURVIS, Mississippi — A former police officer has pleaded not guilty to multiple charges that include fondling and sexual battery.

On Monday, Judge Anthony Mozingo set trial for March 17 and remanded Averal Burnett to the Pearl River County Jail, where he is being held without bond.

The Hattiesburg American reports ( the 47-year-old Burnett was indicted in August by a Lamar County grand jury on four counts of fondling, two counts of sexual battery and a count of attempted sexual battery on a female under the age of 18.

Burnett, who had spent the bulk of his 22 years in law enforcement with the Hattiesburg Police Department, retired from the Lamar County Sheriff's Department on May 16.

Information from: The Hattiesburg American,

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