Man sentenced in connection with 3-year-old girl drowning in the New River in 2019

He was sentenced to five years in prison, with four years and nine months suspended

WYTHE COUNTY, Va. – The man who was arrested and charged in connection to the death of his girlfriend’s daughter back in 2019 has received a prison sentence.

In July 2019, Adrian Puckett and Kimberly Moore were taken into custody after Moore’s 3-year-old daughter, Josie Burleson, was found dead in the New River after an apparent drowning. Authorities said Puckett and Moore were under the influence of meth during the tragic incident.

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Before officers had discovered the child’s body, Puckett and Moore reported Josie missing and reportedly told officers that the young girl had been playing near the New River trail outside of their rental property on Rocky Road when she wandered off.

Two indicted in connection with New River drowning death of 3-year-old girl

At the time of her disappearance, more than 100 people searched for Josie for more than five and a half hours, according to authorities.

When authorities found Josie dead in the New River, both Moore and Puckett were arrested and charged with child abuse and reckless care of a child, but Moore was found not guilty of the child abuse charge back in August 2020.

Kimberly Moore (New River Valley Regional Jail)

In March 2021, Kimberly Moore received a two-year prison sentence.

This week, Puckett was sentenced to five years in prison, with four years and nine months suspended.

About the Author

Jazmine Otey joined the 10 News team in February 2021.

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