Millington man accused of raping, photographing 8-year-old

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Austin Fitzhugh

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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — A Millington man is out on $100,000 bond after he was accused of raping an 8-year-old boy.

Millington Police charged Austin Fitzhugh with rape of a child and aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor.

Police said they were responding to a complaint of child pornography Thursday when they showed up at Fitzhugh’s home on West Union Road, along with Homeland Security Investigation Agents.

They said Fitzhugh gave them access to his phone, where police found naked and lewd photos of an 8-year-old boy. Police say the curtains in the photos matched those in Fitzhugh’s actual window, and they say Fitzhugh admitted to taking the pictures and to performing sex acts with the boy.

A next-door neighbor said he was there when multiple law enforcement agencies swarmed Fitzhugh’s house.

“I thought it was a garage sale, and I saw badges and guns," said the neighbor, who didn't want to be identified. "Glad I didn’t scream at them to get out of my yard. It was intense. There were about 20 vehicles."

Neighbors said it doesn’t match the man they know, a construction worker who only goes between work and home.

"He does not strike me as a person that would harm a child,” a neighbor said. “I don’t believe that whatsoever. I don’t believe it. He’s slow. He got scared, they talked him into some stuff. We all sit around and cook out. He doesn’t drink, doesn’t do drugs, he goes to work.”

"He’s just a good guy,” said another man for whom Fitzhugh worked.

We went to Fitzhugh’s home to try to speak with him, but no one came to the door.

Family members of the victim told WREG they were concerned because there is another minor living at the home. They rejected any indications or notions that Fitzhugh had learning disabilities.

Family members of the victim said they did not know about the accusations until law enforcement contacted them last week.

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