Man released from sex offender status charged with having sex with a minor

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WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (WDHN) — A man who was excused from having to register as a sex offender in Georgia is now behind bars, according to the Walton County Sheriff’s Office.

A release from the sheriff’s office states that Kenneth Christopher Maness, 35, has been charged with having sex with a minor.

Last July, the sheriff’s office was tipped off to an alleged ongoing sexual relationship between Maness and a 16-year-old girl that was working under him.

Further investigation by the Criminal Investigation Bureau found that Maness and the victim allegedly had sex in March while he was her supervisor. The sheriff’s office said that he later had sex with her another two times after he got fired in April.

“By July, suspicious text messages were discovered on the victim’s phone between her and Maness,” the release states. “The victim was interviewed by investigators and disclosed the relationship between her and her former supervisor.”

This was not the first time Maness had a run-in with the law for inappropriate behavior toward minors. A background check found that Maness was arrested “for sending a 14-year-old a photo of his genitals” in 2015.

He was supposed to register as a sex offender but got a release from the status the year after his explicit text messages.

Maness now faces three felony counts of having unlawful sex with a minor, age 16-17, by a person age 24 or order.

As of the latest official update, Maness is still in jail under a bail of $50,000.

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