ALLENDALE, S.C. (WJBF) – A South Carolina man has pleaded guilty on Thursday to obstructing an investigation into the December 2019 murder of a transgender woman.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Xavier Pinckney, 24, of Allendale, provided false and misleading information to the state authorities investigating the murder of Dime Doe, who was a transgender woman, on August 15th, 2019.

According to the court documents, Pinckney admitted that he concealed from state authorities the use of his phone to call and text Dime Doe the day of her murder and lied to state investigators about seeing Daqua Ritter, who allegedly shot Doe to death, on the morning of Doe’s murder.

“The defendant is being held accountable for trying to obstruct an investigation into the tragic murder of a Black transgender woman,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “Acts of violence against LGBTQI+ people, including transgender women of color, are on the rise and have no place in our society. The Justice Department remains steadfast in its commitment to investigating and prosecuting those who target LGBTQI+ people with acts of violence or who try to unlawfully obstruct investigations into these heinous crimes.”

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Pinckney faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for the obstruction of justice offense.

A sentencing date has not yet been scheduled.