Crime

Horry County police investigate claim of sexual assault at St. James High School

St. James High School
St. James High School jbell@thesunnews.com

A teen said she was forced to perform a sex act by another teen at St. James High School over the weekend, according to a police report.

The accused said the encounter was consensual. No arrests had been made in connection to the incident as of Wednesday morning.

Horry County police responded to the Highway 707 school on Monday for a report of criminal sexual conduct. The victim, a 15-year-old girl, told police she returned to the school following a field trip on Saturday, according to a police report.

The suspect, an 18-year-old man, met the 15-year-old as she emptied a water bottle in the back of the school. The girl told police the 18-year-old urinated on the ground next to her, according to the report.

The two went back inside where he grabbed her hand and took her to the bathroom, the report states. There, he forced her to perform a sex act.

The girl said she tried to push away and said “no” several times. The encounter lasted three to five minutes and then the man told her “we have to go,” according to the report. The victim said she went back to class, and then went to the bathroom to cry before returning to the classroom.

Police spoke to the 18-year-old who told officers it was a consensual meeting, according to the report. He said the two kissed and then went to the bathroom and she asked if he wanted to have sex and he said no. The two agreed to a sex act and after a few minutes he said they had to go back to class.

The 18-year-old also said he had sexual contact with the girl about 18 months ago at her house.

The report states that police saw screenshots of surveillance video that showed the two in the back of the school and then minutes later in the hallway. Officers say follow-up investigations will be conducted.

Horry County Schools spokeswoman Lisa Bourcier provided a statement about the incident:

“St. James High School was made aware of the alleged incident on Monday, February 11, after the parents of the victim came to the school and reported the incident to school administration. Law enforcement was immediately contacted and both Horry County School and the Horry County Police Department are investigating the incident.”

Alex Lang is the True Crime reporter for The Sun News covering the legal system and how crime impacts local residents. He says letting residents know if they are safe is a vital role of a newspaper. Alex has covered crime in Detroit, Iowa, New York City, West Virginia and now Horry County.

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