Myrtle Beach man gets life without parole for rape of 5-year-old

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Donald Frank Halstead

CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – A Myrtle Beach man has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for the rape of a 5-year-old girl, according to 15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson.

An Horry County jury convicted Donald Frank Halstead, 34, on Wednesday for first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor following a two-day trial. Judge D. Craig Brown gave Halstead the maximum sentence of life in prison. He will not be eligible for parole and will serve every day of his sentence.

Halstead was a family friend of the victim and sexually assaulted her when she was five-years-old, said Leigh Andrew, the assistant solicitor who along with Mary-Ellen Walter, a senior assistant solicitor, prosecuted the case.

Prosecutors and the victim asked for the maximum sentence because of the age of the victim and the fact that Halstead was already on the sex offender registry from a 2012 conviction involving three young girls.

“I ask for the maximum punishment where I know I’ll be safe and he can’t hurt anyone else,” the victim said to Judge Brown before he sentenced Halstead.

“The victim, while still quite young, showed amazing courage and strength while facing her attacker during trial,” Andrew said. “We are grateful for the hard work and dedication of Horry County Police Detective Blake Klauder in helping to achieve justice in this case.”

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