Former Kentucky EMT and volunteer firefighter faces child sex abuse charges

larry harness mug.gif
Posted at 3:31 PM, Jan 11, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-11 19:57:19-05

LINCOLN COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — A former Lincoln County EMT and firefighter with the Buckeye Volunteer Fire Department in Garrard County faces multiple child sex abuse charges.

Police arrested 53-year-old Anthony Harness last week after they say he admitted to having sex with two male minors several years ago.

Authorities say the victims are now adults but were 14 and 17 years old at the time of the alleged abuse.

"One of the gentlemen that came to us said that it had bothered him for some time, said Lancaster police Maj. Ryan Hughes. "He was dealing with a lot of personal issues and was talking to a friend about it and learned the same friend had had similar issues that happened. He didn't want this to happen to other people."

In Lincoln County, Kentucky State Police charged Harness with sexual abuse, unlawful transaction with a minor, sodomy 2nd, and impersonating a peace officer.

Harness faces the same charges in Garrard County. According to the arrest citations, both police agencies stated Harness admitted to having sex with the minors.

According to the arrest citation by Lancaster Police, Harness admitted to telling the teens he was a deputy sheriff with the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office, when in fact, he was not.

"When his vehicle was impounded on the day of his arrest there were blue lights in it, handcuffs things of that nature," said Hughes.

In court appearances, Harness had not guilty pleas entered on his behalf. The director of Lincoln County Emergency Services says Harness has been an EMT for well over 20 years.

Director Ashley Powell said he put Harness on unpaid administrative leave when the allegations surfaced. He terminated Harness earlier this month.

Harness declined to speak with LEX 18 from the Lincoln County Jail.