Chapel Hill administrator arrested on sexual battery charge - - Columbia, South Carolina

Chapel Hill administrator arrested on sexual battery charge


A city administrator in Chapel Hill has been placed on leave after his arrest on charges of sexual battery by an authority figure.

Michael Keith Hatten, 43, was arrested on the sexual battery charge and contributing to the delinquency of a 16-year-old.

The Marshall County Sheriff's Office received a referral on Friday from the Department of Children's Services of a possible sexual assault that occurred on Dec. 20.

"It's really shocking. I'm just blown away really," said neighbor and teacher Wanda Ervin.

Ervin taught English to one of Hatten's sons at the local high school in Chapel Hill and lives across the street from the family of four.

"Just because someone is accused of something does not mean they've done it," she said.

Hatten, who is listed as a current professor at Columbia State Community College, was arrested Friday and has since bonded out of jail.

"I feel really badly for the children," Ervin said.

Four sheriff's deputies were on Hatten's street Monday and appeared to be searching a remote area just around the corner from his house, but they would not say if the activity was related to Hatten's case.

"I'm holding my judgement out. It's not my place to judge anybody, but I'm certainly going to wait and I hope it's not true," Ervin said.

Hatten's first court appearance will be Jan. 14.

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