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Man charged with statutory rape, child porn possession now accused of raping 8-year-old
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Man charged with statutory rape, child porn possession now accused of raping 8-year-old

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A Rapid City man currently facing charges of statutory rape and child pornography possession is now accused of raping an 8-year-old. 

Nathan Hankins, 27, was indicted in Lawrence County last month on two charges of first-degree rape that allegedly occurred in the summer of 2018, court records show. If found guilty, he could be sentenced up to life in prison. 

He could alternatively be convicted of two counts of sexual contact with a minor, crimes that carry a 15-year maximum prison stay.

The indictment does not mention the gender of the victim, where the alleged rape occurred, or if there's any relationship between Hankins and the victim. 

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Hankins' new indictment means he's now facing sex crime charges in two South Dakota jurisdictions and in federal court. 

He's pleaded not guilty at the Pennington County Court to 4th degree statutory rape after he allegedly impregnated a 15-year-old girl (the age of consent in South Dakota is 16), court records show. Hankins was convicted of the same crime in 2014 but all details of the incident are sealed. He had to register as a sex offender due to that case, a federal affidavit says.

Hankins is also charged at the federal court in Rapid City with receiving child porn after Google, a national child-protection organization and local law enforcement allegedly found him in possession of more than 100 child porn photos and videos. The status of the case is unclear because it's now under seal. 

There are no upcoming court dates for Hankins' charges out of Lawrence County, but his two-day statutory rape trial is scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. on Jan. 28. 

Prosecutors are planning on using a placenta sample from the victim as evidence, court records show. The evidence can be used after a judge ruled a Rapid City police officer didn't need a warrant to collect it from a Colorado abortion clinic because Colorado's laws don't require a warrant for "medical waste." DNA tests from the sample, Hankins and the mother show that Hankins "could not be excluded as the father," court records say. 

— Contact Arielle Zionts at arielle.zionts@rapidcityjournal.com

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