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Sharpe sentenced for sexually assaulting girl

Posted: August 27, 2013 6:51 p.m.
Updated: August 28, 2013 5:42 a.m.

A Johnsonville man arrested in 2012 for sexually assaulting an 8-year-old, and allegedly plotting to have the victim and her family killed, pleaded guilty under a negotiated plea deal on Monday.

Circuit Court Judge James Barber sentenced Brian Robert Sharpe, 26, to three years in jail; five years probation; and sex offender counseling, treatment and evaluation on first-degree assault and battery charges. The Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) originally charged Sharpe with first-degree criminal sexual conduct. The KCSO then charged Sharpe with a murder solicitation charge after he allegedly told another detainee at the Kershaw County Detention Center that he wanted to make sure the victim and her mother did not testify against him. Nicole Simpson, of the 5th Circuit Solicitor’s Office, and William Tetterton, Sharpe’s lawyer, said both charges were dismissed in favor negotiating a plea on the lesser charge.

Simpson and Tetterton said the negotiations were made in the best interest of the child and her family.

Simpson also asked Barber to make a determination on a sex offender evaluator, but the judge said it would be impossible for him or another judge to know who to choose. The sex offender counseling evaluation will determine Sharpe will be required to register on the state’s sex offender list. Both the solicitor’s office and Tetterton will have separate counselors evaluate Sharpe.

Barber also ordered Sharpe not to have any contact with the victim or her family during his probation.

Sharpe lived with the victim’s mother in 2012. According to an account given in court Monday, Sharpe entered the 8-year-old girl’s room on June 1, 2012, while her mother slept. Sharpe repeatedly whispered the girl’s name, waking her up before sexually assaulting her. At some point, both the victim and Sharpe left the room and went to separate areas of the house. The victim returned to her room and covered her head with her covers. Sharpe returned to the girl’s room, but nothing occurred at that time.

The victim later went to the room Sharpe and her mother shared and told her mother what happened. The woman woke up Sharpe and asked what happened; he claimed the girl lied. The woman then called her mother to pick up her daughter and the victim’s brother. The child’s grandmother then contacted authorities.

The victim is undergoing counseling.

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