Sheriff: 'This is an unthinkable crime' - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Sheriff: 'This is an unthinkable crime'

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Dupree (Source: Marlboro County Sheriff's Office) Dupree (Source: Marlboro County Sheriff's Office)

Press release from the Marlboro County Sheriff's Office:

Sheriff Knight announces a new arrest in the case on Old Wire Rd. in Wallace SC. Derrick Dupree, 31 years old of Plum Lane Wallace SC has been charged with Burglary 1st, Kidnapping, Criminal Sexual Conduct 1st and Use of a Weapon during the Commission of a Violent Crime. This new development transpired when the MCSO got conclusive forensic evidence from SLED that Dupree was involved in the crime. The MCSO and 4th Circuit Solicitors Office have consulted on the case and the charges against Kadeem Hooks have been dismissed by Solicitor Will Rogers. In the interest of justice, Hooks has been released from custody after the arrest of Dupree, as it is apparent that he was not be involved in the crime. With that said, the investigation will still continue to make certain no stone is left unturned.  Hooks was arrested Monday based on eye witnesses that lead investigators to him and a video confession given by Hooks. Hooks arrest as all arrest we make was based on probable cause. The probable cause was very strong. The MCSO did continue to investigate because new evidence arose that concerned MCSO investigators as it related to the timeline in the case and how it was established. That new evidence and witnesses that came forward was reviewed in detail and considered strongly. The next day, the MCSO received the evidence results from SLED that confirmed Dupree was the suspect. Dupree has a lengthy record and has served prison time recently. Dupree also lives near Hwy 177 in Wallace SC that is not far from the crime scene. There is no indication that Dupree knows the victim. A bond hearing on Dupree will be held at a later date. The facts of the case remain the same that Dupree approached the home and tricked his way inside. While inside, Dupree then assaulted the victim at knife point and the victim's lifeline was used to call 911.

Sheriff Knight: "This has been a very exhausting and complicated case that we have spent day and night on. I will say that my whole career I have always tried to do what is right. When our investigation revealed some inconsistencies, we realized that we needed to continue to investigate. We had strong probable cause with a confession given by Mr. Hooks, but we still felt compelled to work. We then were contacted by new witnesses and began investigating Dupree. The next day SLED confirmed Dupree was the suspect. Forensic evidence matched to Dupree is conclusive evidence. My goal as Sheriff of Marlboro County is to protect the citizens and make sure we do all we can to find the truth and justice in each case. The new evidence and diligent work we have done has made certain of that and that an innocent man was not convicted. I hope that the victim and their family as well as the citizens of Marlboro County can find peace and confidence that the MCSO relies heavily on ethics and persistence in our daily jobs."

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