SCOTTSBURG, Ind. (WDRB) -- A 22-year-old southern Indiana man is facing charges after police said he was found in a church parking lot with a naked 15-year-old girl.
Kennen Hemmingway pleaded not guilty Tuesday to three counts of sexual misconduct with a minor and three counts of child solicitation though court records say he admitted to recently having “sexual relations twice” with the teenager.
Washington County Sheriff Brent Miller said deputies went looking for a gray car early Sunday morning after reports that the car had been sitting at the end of a driveway off New Cut Road for two nights in a row.
"It could be any number of things with a suspicious vehicle call at 2 o'clock in the morning," Miller said.
When officers spotted the gray Nissan Altima described by the tipster at Mt. Hebron Church in Scottsburg, they say they found Hemmingway in a compromising position.
"They discovered a man who was partially unclothed. I think he was 22," Miller said. "There was a young female in the vehicle also. She was unclothed and 15 years of age."
Hemmingway was arrested. According to the police report, the 15-year-old had been sneaking out of her house without her parents knowing.
The last picture Hemmingway posted on Instagram was of a gray Nissan Altima with the caption, "I got a new car." It appeared to be the same vehicle left in the church parking lot. Inside the car, you see clothes strung about. And court records say deputies found condoms inside — some unwrapped.
Hemmingway told police he met the teen on Instagram earlier this year, and they stopped talking when she told him her age.
“He stated they started talking again using Snapchat, Instagram and text,” according to the probable cause affidavit.
Hemmingway told officers he initially messaged the girl, because she was pictured in camouflage, and he’d served in the military.
Indiana Army National Guard confirmed Hemmingway’s honorable discharge in January 2019.
The police report says Hemmingway admitted to having sex twice with the 15-year-old girl on the nights he had been sitting at the end of a driveway. He reportedly told officers they had not had sex the night of his arrest because “she was not feeling well.”
The pastor of the church didn't want to comment on camera. He said he knows Hemmingway, but he's not a member of his congregation. The church has several security cameras pointed at the parking lot which may provide clear evidence to prosecutors.
If convicted, Hemmingway could face more than 70 years in prison.
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