In federal court Kenneth Glenn Hinson was sentenced to 25 years for illegal possession of a gun after he was ruled to be an armed career criminal because of prior convictions for rape, cocaine trafficking, and assault on a man. Without that ruling his maximum sentence would have been 10 years.
Hinson could have been sentenced from 15 years to life in prison and that longest possible sentence is what I believe he should have been sentenced to since I believe he will always be a public safety risk and is more likely to kill his rape victims next time.
He was already a convicted child rapist who served 9 years for raping an 11-year-old girl when he was unsuccessfully tried for kidnapping 2 other girls at gunpoint and then raping those teenagers in an underground bunker before they escaped. The girls believed they'd been left to die in that bunker. In that South Carolina case the acquittal on all charges came down I believe to many incorrect assumptions including how real victims can behave after escaping.
Hinson filed a motion to prevent those 2 girls from testifying at his federal sentencing. The reasoning was that they could not be considered his victims since he was acquitted of the crimes against them. His motion was denied and 4 women testified about being raped by Hinson including a niece of his who was not a victim in his conviction or his acquittal.
Hinson was convicted of criminal sexual conduct in 1991 after he molested an 11-year-old girl. That victim also appeared in court to face Hinson on Friday.
The victim told Wooten that Hinson was supposed to be driving her to school that day, but instead drove into a wooded area, pulled her into the back of his van and raped her at knifepoint. The attack happened just two days before her birthday.
“I said everything I could to get him to stop. I said, ‘I love you. You’re hurting me, please stop,’” she said. [...]
“You’re going to do what you want to do,” Hinson shouted at [U.S. District Court Judge Terry] Wooten. “ ... I’ve been made to look like a monster because a bunch of crackheads set me up! It makes no difference what the sentence is!”
This insistence that he was set up -- and therefore wrongfully convicted of the original felony which made his possession of a gun illegal -- is unfortunately typical. What shouldn't be typical is having juries suckered by the rationalizations of rapists.
I consider his acquittal on those sex crime charges -- because the jury decided there was reasonable doubt about whether the girls consented -- to be a huge miscarriage of justice. Thankfully, an undeniable fact was that Hinson, who was a fugitive at the time, was caught in possession of the gun which may have been the one the girls described in their testimony.