CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) – A man accused of raping a woman in downtown Charleston in 2004 was sentenced after pleading guilty in court Friday.
John Wilson Sloan III was sentenced to 30 years in prison following his guilty plea to 1st degree criminal sexual conduct and 1st degree burglary regarding a 2004 sexual assault.
Assistant Solicitor Timmy Finch said that evidence gathered at the scene, diligent police work and the strength of the victim and a witness drove the case to a guilty plea from the trial docket.
"DNA identified the defendant as the only possible perpetrator. Photographs of the victim days after the assault taken by City of Charleston detectives showed the severity of her beating. The victim stood strong and was ready to testify at trial to see that justice was carried out. She was relieved to get closure through the guilty plea and was grateful for Judge Young's sentence," he said.
The charges against John Sloan in the 2004 assault arose from an incident that took place on King Street in downtown Charleston.
The victim had been in the Upper Deck Tavern before heading home just 150 feet further down King Street. Sloan encountered the woman briefly and followed her to her residence. Sloan assaulted her outside before forcing her into the apartment where the violence escalated and she was raped.
The victim did not know her attacker and could only provide investigators with a general description of his appearance. Sloan's identity was only realized in 2008 through a match of his DNA profile with the profile developed by SLED analysts from evidence taken from the victim.
Sloan was due to be processed out of SCDC when the sample leading to his arrest on these charges was taken.
Ninth Circuit Solicitor Scarlett A. Wilson praised the legislature for providing the statute that allows DNA samples to be obtained from convicted criminals.
The victim addressed the court via telephone from out of state and recounted how in the midst of the attack she thought, "This is how I am going to die. Who's going to find my body?"