RICHLAND COUNTY, S.C. (WJBF) – An Augusta man is behind bars, facing numerous charges after being caught half naked with a 13-year-old girl in Columbia, South Carolina.
30-year-old Derek Jerome Nelson is charged with criminal sexual conduct, assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature, sexual exploitation of a minor, solicitation to commit a felony, dissemination of obscene material to a person under 18 and failure to stop for blue lights.
A Richland County deputy reportedly spotted a vehicle parked at a vacant business on the 4700 block of Alpine Road just before 3 a.m. on July 7th. When he approached the vehicle, he found two people in the back seat. The man the in the car then climbed into the driver seat and fled, leading to a chase.
After coming to a stop after the chase, the driver, identified as Nelson, approached the deputy wearing only a t-shirt.
He reportedly told the deputy he was ‘hooking up’ with a girl he met online. He said he got scared when the deputy approached his vehicle, so he fled.
Nelson said the girl jumped from the vehicle during the chase.
Other deputies later found the girl with injuries to her hands, arms and legs. She said she was ‘thrown from the car’ by her ‘boyfriend’. She was then taken to a hospital for treatment, where investigators learned she was 13-years-old.
Investigators found that Nelson came from Augusta to meet a girl he met on an dating site.
The 13-year-old referred to Nelson as her ’30-year-old boyfriend’.
Nelson told officials that he believed the girl to be 18-years-old, but investigators found that he had written a message to the teen saying ‘You are my 13-year-old doll.’
Nelson is currently being held at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center.