Carnival worker charged with raping runaway 17-year-old girl at Appalachian Fairground

Tony Casey • Aug 28, 2013 at 3:54 PM

A carnival worker at the Appalachian Fair was arrested Monday on charges that he had sex with an underage girl on the fairground in Gray, helped her run away from home and supplied her with drugs.

Washington County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested 29-year-old Harold Robert House, 612 E. Maple St., Johnson City, on accusations that he had sex with the Kingsport 17-year-old girl twice on Friday.

In a court document, Investigator Jared Taylor reported that House had helped the girl run away from home on Friday by picking her up from her residence in Kingsport about 2:15 a.m. with the intentions that the two would live together. The girl left her family a note spelling out her intentions, and the family reported her as a runaway. The girl was found sleeping in the back seat of House’s vehicle parked at the fairground.

• See the affidavit of complaint filed against House.

On Monday, investigators interviewed House at the Sheriff’s Office, where he admitted that he had sexual relations with the girl.

Taylor said in the court document House admitted to twice having oral sex with the 17-year-old, having the victim perform oral sex on him twice, and also digitally penetrating the victim two times in his vehicle on the fairgrounds on Friday morning.

House also told investigators he provided the girl with marijuana and smoked it with her between the two times they had sex, according to the court document.

House was employed by Drew Expositions, a contractor that provides carnival rides and games at the Appalachian Fair.

He was charged with eight counts of aggravated statutory rape and two counts of contributing to delinquency of a minor.

House was jailed in the Washington County Detention Center and arraigned Tuesday in Sessions Court. His bond was set at $100,000 on the condition of DNA testing. A preliminary hearing was set for Sept. 4.

Recommended for You

    Johnson City Press Videos