Middle school custodian charged with rape
By DEUCE NIVEN
Statutory rape warrants were served on a school custodian Friday evening, accused of sex acts involving a 14-year-old male on the Tabor City Middle School campus during the winter and spring of 2014, Lt. Greg Sibbett of the Tabor City Police Department said.
Derrick Hemmingway, 41, of School Street, was charged with four counts of the crime Friday evening, booked into the Columbus County Detention Center, bond set at $80,000, Sibbett said.
Family members of the victim, now 15, contacted police Monday after finding inappropriate text messages on the boy’s phone, Sibbett said.
Police believe Hemmingway was sending the texts, and have determined that he had sexual relations with the boy four times between January and June, each time on the Tabor City Middle School campus, Sibbett said.
“This occurred in the custodial room,” Sibbett said.
Columbus County Schools Superintendent Alan Faulk Friday evening said he was not aware of the police investigation, or how long Hemmingway has been employed by the school system.
Look for more on this story in Wednesday’s Tabor-Loris Tribune in print and online.