Child abuse suspect sees more charges | News | The Press and Standard
by The Press and Standard | April 13, 2016 5:00 pm
Last Updated: April 13, 2016 at 2:09 pm
By GEORGE SALSBERRY
Monday the bond set against Benton Michael Presley, 20, of 437 Patriot Lane in Ruffin climbed to $850,000 as investigators from the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office filed a third felony charge against him.
Investigators on Monday added criminal sexual assault with a minor to Presley’s list of charges. A bond of $300,000 was set on that felony.
After a five-year-old girl was brought to the Emergency Department of the Colleton Medical Center on the afternoon of March 31, members of the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office were allegedly able to collect enough information to initially charge Presley on a charge of unlawful conduct towards a child.
Digging deeper into the investigation, Colleton County Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officer Lt. Shane Roberts said, led investigators to file a second charge against Presley last week: a charge of attempted murder.
Roberts explained that the attempted murder charge against Presley was sought because of “the manner of child abuse.”
Roberts said he would not publicly discuss the specifics of the abuse that led to the second charge, pointing out that the allegations are still being investigated “to see if any other crimes were committed.”
After the third charge was filed on Monday, Roberts said investigators were still not ready to discuss the specifics.
Investigators found that the child had been the victim of an alleged pattern of abuse.
They also allegedly found that the girl’s mother Patricia Parks, 25, of 437 Patriot Lane, Ruffin, had been aware of the earlier abuse, which led to the filing of a charge of unlawful conduct toward a child against Parks on the afternoon of April 6.
When Parks appeared for arraignment on the charge, a Colleton County Magistrate set her bond at $200,000.
Presley was incarcerated in lieu of $250,000 bond when he appeared before a magistrate on the unlawful conduct charge.
When he was arraigned on the attempted murder charge, Robert said, the magistrate ordered a $300,000 bond. He would now have to come up with $550,000 to be released from custody.
That number went to $850,000 on Monday afternoon.
After the initial incident, officials of the Department of Social Services placed the young girl in protective custody.
Following Parks’ arrest, DSS placed the woman’s two other children in the care of relatives.