Man charged in ‘sexting’ case


A man was arrested Wednesday after police said he sent more than 600 sexually charged text messages, including photos of his genitals, to a 13-year-old Moncks Corner student.

The child, who attends Berkeley Middle School, told a student resource officer that she didn’t know how the man got her phone number. She asked the sender to stop several times during the barrage of messaging that started April 28 and lasted several days, according to a police report.

“He was repeatedly sending the same picture and vulgar messages,” said Lt. Michael Roach, the Moncks Corner Police Department detective who investigated the case. “And he was very vulgarly asking her to send pictures back.”

Richard Eric Davis, 43, of Hood Street in St. Stephen, who authorities said owned the phone number from which the “sexts” were sent, was arrested on charges of disseminating obscene material to a minor.

After he was arrested while riding his bicycle in St. Stephen, Davis acknowledged sending the messages and photos to three random numbers but said he no longer had the phone, according to the report. The girl had told him that she had called the police, but he had thought she was lying, he told investigators.

Davis does not have a previous arrest record in South Carolina, according to the State Law Enforcement Division.

The charge he faces is a felony punishable by three years in prison, Roach said. “I really don’t think people realize that when you take pictures of yourself and you send those pictures to somebody, it’s usually not going to end well,” he said.

Andrew Knapp is editor of the quick response team, which covers crime, courts and breaking news. He previously worked as a reporter and copy editor at Florida Today, Newsday and Bangor (Maine) Daily News. He enjoys golf, weather and fatherhood.