UNITED STATES NEWS

Iowa man is found guilty in death of 10-year-old girl whose disappearance prompted a huge search

Sep 15, 2023, 7:58 AM | Updated: 1:02 pm

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa man was convicted Friday in the murder of a 10-year-old girl who was missing for eight months before her remains were found in a pond.

A judge found Henry Earl Dinkins, 51, guilty of first-degree murder and kidnapping in the death of Breasia Terrell, whose disappearance July 10, 2020, led to huge searches by dozens of volunteers and numerous law enforcement agencies. Fishermen found her body in March 2021 in a rural area north of Davenport.

Sentencing was set for Oct. 11, at which Dinkins faces a mandatory term of life in prison.

Prosecutors charged Dinkins with Breasia’s death in May 2021, alleging he kidnapped and then shot her to death. She had been staying the night with her half-brother and his father, Dinkins.

Dinkins is a registered sex offender who was convicted of third-degree sexual abuse in 1990, when he was 17.

Judge Henry Latham issued his decision after reading through a long description of the evidence. At times, the judge paused as he struggled to maintain his composure.

“The court finds beyond a reasonable doubt the defendant was the last person seen with Breasia. He had taken custody of her, had no authority to do so and had removed her from the apartment from which he had authority to care for her with the specific intent to inflict a serious injury upon her,” Latham said. “As a result of that removal, Breasia suffered death.”

After the decision, as deputies were removing Dinkins from the courtroom, spectators erupted in cheers.

During the two-week trial, defense attorneys noted a lack of physical evidence, including no blood or semen linking Breasia and Dinkins in places prosecutors said they were before her death.

Prosecutors pointed to testimony that Dinkins’ roommate awoke at 3 a.m. on July 10 and found that neither Breasia nor Dinkins were in the apartment. Prosecutors said Dinkins took Breasia to a site where he sexually assaulted her and then killed the child.

Dinkins’ son later gave investigators details about accompanying his father to a Walmart to buy bleach and traveling to a site that matched the description of where Breasia’s body was found months later.

The trial had been moved to Cedar Rapids when the Iowa Supreme Court granted a change of venue, but just before the trial began, Dinkins decided to have the case heard in front of a judge. Because of that, the trial was moved back to the Scott County Courthouse in Davenport.

United States News

FILE -Stephen Parlato of Boulder, Colo., holds a sign that reads "Hands Off Roe!!!" as abortion rig...

Associated Press

Alabama IVF ruling puts spotlight on state plans for tax breaks and child support for fetuses

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The recent Alabama Supreme Court ruling that frozen embryos are legally protected children is highlighting how support for the idea that a fetus should have the same rights as a person underpins far less dramatic laws and proposals from abortion foes across the U.S. Lawmakers in at least six states have […]

3 hours ago

This image provided by Tyler Watts shows Florida Man Games competitors, from left, Joshua Barr, Mic...

Associated Press

At the Florida Man Games, tank-topped teams compete at evading police, wrestling over beer

They rose up by the dozens from across Florida, caricatured competitors in tank tops and cutoff shorts, for a showdown that treats evading police and wrestling over beer like Olympic sports. Promoted as “the most insane athletic showdown on Earth,” the Florida Man Games poke fun at the state’s reputation for bizarre stories that involve […]

3 hours ago

Andie Nelson, right, embraces Brian Jaskot, both of Virginia, after their race during the 25 meter ...

Associated Press

‘Totally cold’ is not too cold for winter swimmers competing in a frozen Vermont lake

NEWPORT, Vt. (AP) — Plunging into a frozen lake and swimming laps may not be everyone’s good time but for winter swimmers who return year after year to a northern Vermont lake near the Canadian border, there’s nothing better. The 10th annual Memphremagog Winter Swimming Festival kicked off Friday with the 200-meter (218-yard) freestyle race […]

3 hours ago

FILE - A school bus moves up Rock Door Canyon Rd., in Oljato-Monument Valley, Utah, on the Navajo r...

Associated Press

Native American tribes gain new authority to stop unwanted hydropower projects

Federal regulators have granted Native American tribes more power to block hydropower projects on their land after a flurry of applications were filed to expand renewable energy in the water-scarce U.S. Southwest.

7 hours ago

Associated Press

1 killed, 17 injured in New York City apartment fire

NEW YORK (AP) — One person was killed and 17 were injured in a fire that broke out at a New York City apartment building, leaving some residents trapped on the fire escape on Friday. Twelve people were taken to area hospitals, and four were in critical condition, officials said at a news conference. One […]

7 hours ago

(Karim Jaafar/Pool via AP)...

Associated Press

Biden administration restores Trump-rescinded policy on illegitimacy of Israeli settlements

The Biden administration on Friday restored a U.S. legal finding dating back nearly 50 years that Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories are “illegitimate” under international law.

8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

...

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Day & Night is looking for the oldest AC in the Valley

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.

...

Canvas Annuity

Interest rates may have peaked. Should you buy a CD, high-yield savings account, or a fixed annuity?

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades, and it looks like the Fed has paused hikes. This may be the best time to lock in rates for long-term, low-risk financial products like fixed annuities.

Iowa man is found guilty in death of 10-year-old girl whose disappearance prompted a huge search