Jury finds man guilty of criminal sexual conduct, assault and battery
by Staff Reports | November 13, 2017 8:29 am
Last Updated: November 14, 2017 at 11:54 am
A Manning man charged in January 2016 with three counts of criminal sexual conduct with a minor will serve three years in a South Carolina prison.
A jury found Michael James Dinkins of 1173 Locust Way in Manning guilty Tuesday of one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct and two counts of second-degree assault and battery. He was tried during a term of General Sessions Court in Clarendon County.
According to reports from the Clarendon County Sheriff’s Office, Dinkins turned himself into authorities in the early morning hours of Jan. 20, 2017, on the advise of his attorney Steve McKenzie.
McKenzie said at the time of Dinkins’ arrest that the charges were “completely not in (Dinkins’) character.”
“He is a U.S. Army veterans who worked at EMS and then worked his way through nursing school,” McKenzie said.
Reports from the Clarendon County Sheriff’s Office indicate that a woman identified as Dinkins’ wife told deputies that a minor child reported Dinkins had “kissed her on the back of her neck,” about eight months before his arrest, and then texted the child Dec. 26, 2015. The message read, “LUKUAMU,” which deputies reported means “Love You, Kiss You, Already Miss You!”
The woman told deputies that the child reported on New Year’s night that Dinkins “touched (her) hand to see if (she) was asleep, kissed (her) on the mouth and tried to open (her) lips with his tongue.”
Dinkins denied the allegations at the initial time of the report, which was taken Jan. 8, according to paperwork from the Clarendon County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies reported that the child had an appointment with a psychiatrist in Sumter the day before the official reports, and McKenzie said she had an appointment with a forensic psychiatrist in Florence after the report was made.
McKenzie said that Dinkins and his wife separated Dec. 31, 2015, and that these allegations followed thereafter.