Columbia County man accused of molestation now charged with witness tampering

 A Grovetown man accused of molesting two teen girls was charged Friday with influencing a witness.

The influencing witness count was added to the sex charges leveled in recent weeks at Landon “Dock” Norman, 40, of the 1900 block of Long Creek Falls.

Also charged Thursday with influencing a witness was Juliana Erin Key, 29, of the 4300 block of Goshen Lake Drive South in Augusta.

According to a Columbia County Sheriff’s Office report, the person who reported the incident “advised that he was approached by the suspect and asked to influence a witness to drop the charges against him.”

The report doesn’t specify whether the “suspect” was Norman or Key, but Norman has been jailed at the Columbia County Detention Center since a Superior Court judge denied him bond last month.

Key was released from the detention center Thursday, the same day she was booked, on a $7,600 bond, according to a jailer.

A phone message left Monday afternoon for sheriff’s Capt. Steve Morris to seek clarification wasn’t immediately returned.

Norman is accused of touching a 14-year-old girl and charged with aggravated child molestation, enticing a child for indecent purposes and five counts of electronically furnishing obscene materials to a minor.

Though arrested in October, the incident occurred in June at Riverside Park, where the victim’s brother and Norman’s son played baseball together.

Assistant District Attorney Pittman Morris said during a November bond hearing that Norman lured the girl to a secluded area and talked her into his car, where he molested her.

“He told the victim he would kill her if she (cried out) to anyone,” Pittman Morris said, saying Norman would likely threaten or intimidate the victims or witnesses in the case if he were released on bond.

Norman added the teen as a friend on Facebook and made inappropriate comments and sent nude photos to her e-mail address, according to authorities.

Norman also is charged with aggravated sexual battery, aggravated sexual assault and rape in connection to a girl’s claims two years ago, when she was 16, that he molested her for four months.

At the time, she recanted her story because “she was scared and could not deal with it,” Pittman Morris said. When Norman was recently charged, the case was reopened and the older victim cooperated with authorities and gave them details of the abuse.

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