Man accused of sexual assault sentenced to 45 years

Man accused of sexual assault sentenced to 45 years

WEST COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - A man accused of breaking into a West Columbia apartment and attacking a woman and her daughter was found guilty in a Lexington County court on Friday.

Nathaniel Hunter, 34, was sentenced to 45 years in prison.

"We appreciate the hard work and dedication of the entire West Columbia Police Department, and especially Sgt. Bramlett, during this investigation. Their investigators worked countless hours to solve this crime and bring Hunter to justice," 11th Circuit Deputy Solicitor Suzanne Mayes said.

The mother addressed the court regarding the sentencing asking for a lengthy period of incarceration due to her daughter's emotional scars. She said that Hunter has "forever stolen her daughter's security and innocence."

Investigators with the West Columbia Police Department were able to identify Hunter from DNA inside a stocking cap the woman was able to pull off of Hunter during a struggle.

Officers say a phone taken from Hunter after his arrest showed numerous searches he had made on the topic of DNA testing and evidence. Records in the phone even showed that Hunter had called both SLED and the S.C. Department of Probation and Parole attempting to have his DNA removed from their database.

At the time of the April 2017 incident, Hunter was out on bond on murder and burglary charges from a crime out of Fairfiled County and was not supposed to have a gun.

The crimes Hunter is accused of committing in this case are classified as violent and are "no parole" offenses.

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