Crime & Public Safety

He killed a Beaufort Co. child in 1998. Now a burglary could mean he gets life in prison

A Beaufort County man previously convicted of killing a 7-year-old girl in 1998 was indicted by a Beaufort County grand jury last week on charges of first-degree burglary.

If convicted, Roy Dean White, 47, of Burton faces up to life in prison for the 2018 burglary.

An October 2018 arrest warrant for White says he entered a woman’s Burton residence the night of Sept. 8 and stole items that belonged to her and her children while she was at home.

A trail of women’s clothing and shoe impressions in the dirt led police away from the home to White’s nearby residence on Adams Circle, a previous Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office report says.

White previously served 12 years in prison for the 1998 death of his girlfriend’s daughter — 2nd-grader Kimberly “Kimi” Michelle Slattery.

An autopsy report found Kimi “died during an attack associated with sexual assault.” It states the abuse likely was ongoing for “at least months.”

The autopsy report says her cause of death was likely “asphyxia such as smothering or chest compressions.”

Kimi had been left in the care of White while her mother worked a shift at Checkers restaurant. She returned home to find her daughter already in rigor mortis.

In May, a judge for the burglary case approved up to $3,000 in costs for psychosexual and private psychological assessments of White requested by his attorney.

Public Defender Courtney Gibbes, White’s attorney, did not return a phone call from the Island Packet and Beaufort Gazette asking for more information about the exams.

Judge Carmen Mullen approved the request. “Due to the nature of the case, it appears that the relief requested is reasonable, necessary and proper,” she wrote.

Mullen approved a $250,000 surety bond for White in December. As of Wednesday, he had not posted bond and remained at Beaufort County Detention Center.

Bond conditions require that White live with a Seabrook relative, have no contact with the victim or her family and electronic monitoring.

In 1999, Judge George Bowman Brown sentenced White to a more lenient prison term — 15 years — after White pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of homicide by child abuse. That conviction carries a minimum 25-year sentence, but Brown suspended 10 years. He had originally been charged with murder and criminal sexual conduct with a minor.

Fourteenth Circuit Solicitor Duffie Stone, who was an assistant solicitor at the time and prosecuted the case, agreed to the plea.

Under South Carolina law, those convicted of homicide by child abuse and who maintain good conduct in prison are automatically released after serving 85 percent of their sentence. White, who was not required to register as a sex offender, was released from prison in December 2011.

Kimi’s father, Dann Slattery, killed himself four months later after running into White at a Beaufort restaurant.