Defendant deemed incompetent for trial

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Charged with CSC with minors

By Stan Welch – A West Pelzer man who was arrested last year on two charges of criminal sexual conduct with a minor, will be remanded to probate court to undergo commitment to a mental institute after having been found incompetent for trial.

Jacob Paul Allen Black, at the time of his arrest, was a 24 year old white male, residing at Lot 4 at 11 Drake Street. On January 19, 2012, according to police records obtained from West Pelzer Police Chief Mike Clardy, under the Freedom of Information Act, (FOIA) Black molested a four year old female child while visiting the child’s mother.

A subsequent medical examination confirmed Clardy’s decision to pursue the investigation; a decision quickly affirmed by a request from the ACSO to confer with two Sheriff’s investigators who had recently interviewed Black in connection with a separate but similar case.

Clardy met with Investigators Danny Barton and Rob Gebing, who were investigating a separate complaint involving an eleven year old female, who also stated that Black had molested her.

According to the police report obtained from Chief Clardy, Black provided a detailed written account of two incidents as well as a written apology for his actions.

Clardy met with assistant solicitor K. Reynolds to inform her of the status of the case and later that day served three warrants on Black. After several months, Black obtained legal counsel, according to the four year old’s father; counsel who wasted no time seeking a psychological examination of the suspect.

The results of the examinations turned the direction of the case.

Two experts examined Black and determined that he did “not appear to have a factual and rational understanding of the adversarial nature of the legal process.” The report added that “a provisional diagnosis of mild intellectual disability for the defendant would be appropriate.”

On March 7 of this year, approximately 14 months after his arrest, Black was declared incompetent to stand trial. Instead, he will undergo commitment proceedings, and be incarcerated in a mental facility for an as yet determined sentence.

The four year old’s father, in a telephone interview with The Journal, expressed his relief that Black will at least be taken off the streets, despite serious questions about the decision.

“I listened to the police officer read this creep’s confession and I thought, ‘ Are you kidding me? This guy knew exactly what he was doing.’ My thought was how can he be unfit for trial, but be fit to walk the streets. I don’t care if it’s jail or a mental institute. I just want him off the streets. My daughter still wakes up at night, screaming about the monster in her room. I hope to God she never sees him again, as long as she lives.”