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UPDATED: Kinard faces federal charge; Bamberg County official accused of lying to buy gun
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UPDATED: Kinard faces federal charge; Bamberg County official accused of lying to buy gun

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Suspended Bamberg County Councilman Kerry Trent Kinard is facing a federal charge after being accused of lying on his application to purchase a pistol.

Kinard, 49, is charged with making material false statements in connection with the attempted acquisition of a firearm.

A federal criminal complaint alleges that on Dec. 3, Kinard went to Sportsman’s Warehouse at 476 Piney Grove Road in Columbia, based on his location monitoring.

At the time, he was out on bond on state charges related to the alleged sexual abuse of children over the course of numerous years

While inside the store, Kinard allegedly attempted to purchase a 9mm Taurus G3 pistol.

The firearms dealer "performed a background check and the firearm was not transferred to Kinard as there was a delayed denial for the attempted transaction," the federal complaint states.

The complaint accuses Kinard of making two false statements on the standard Firearms Transaction Record application.

The application asked, in part, "Are you under indictment or information in any court for a felony, or any other crime for which the judge could imprison you for more than one year…?"

Kinard allegedly answered, "No."

The application also asked, "Are you subject to a court order … restraining you from harassing, stalking or threatening your child or an intimate partner or child of such partner?"

Kinard allegedly answered, "No."

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Kinard is facing state charges of first-degree assault and battery, second-degree attempted criminal sexual conduct with a minor under age 16, committing or attempting to commit a lewd act upon a child under age 16 and two counts each of criminal solicitation of a minor and dissemination of obscene material to a person under 18 years of age.

He had been out on bond on the state charges since Nov. 4.

Conditions of Kinard’s $75,000 surety bond included wearing a GPS monitor, not visiting Bamberg County for any reason except court appearances and having no contact with his accusers, among others.

Kinard was also under an order of protection when he allegedly attempted to purchase a firearm.

On Oct. 27, S.C. Family Court Judge Vicki J. Snelgrove entered a protective order restraining Kinard "from committing further acts of abuse or threats of abuse" against his accusers.

The court found that the "evidence establishes that [Kinard] represents a credible threat to the physical safety of the petitioner/victim. [Kinard] used, attempted to use, or threatened to use physical force against petitioner/victim that is reasonably expected to cause bodily injury," the federal complaint states.

Kinard’s attorney, Bakari Sellers, said Tuesday that "This case is clearly an abuse of discretion. These cases are rarely if ever filed.

"We are filing a speedy trial motion in the Bamberg County case and look to have that trial ASAP."

At previous hearings, Sellers has maintained that an independent psychiatrist performed a mental health evaluation of Kinard and determined that he is "not a danger to the community or himself."

As for Kinard’s federal charge, Assistant U.S. Attorney Elliot B. Daniels, of the Columbia office, is prosecuting the case. The case is being investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, with assistance from the S.C Law Enforcement Division.

Kinard appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Shiva V. Hodges on Tuesday in Columbia. Kinard remains in federal custody.

A preliminary hearing for Kinard’s federal charge is scheduled for 10 a.m. Dec. 17 at the federal courthouse in Columbia.

Gov. Henry McMaster suspended Kinard from public office until the state case is adjudicated.

If convicted on the state charges, Kinard faces a maximum of 20 years in prison.

If convicted of the federal offense, Kinard faces up to 10 years in prison.

Contact the writer: mbrown@timesanddemocrat.com or 803-533-5545. Follow on Twitter: @MRBrownTandD.

 

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