Troy Hickman, aged 59, has been sentenced to 20 years in prison following his conviction for the repeated sexual exploitation of a disabled family member.
The charges against Hickman included two counts of aggravated sexual battery and two counts of exploitation and intimidation of a disabled adult.
His guilty plea in May led to this sentencing.
Hickman’s arrest came after an intellectually disabled woman, whom he had been abusing since she was 18, confided in a friend about the abuse, prompting the friend to report the matter to the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office.
During the investigation, it was revealed that the victim and Hickman spent extensive time alone together throughout the years when the abuse occurred.
The victim, despite facing threats of harm by Hickman to prevent her from disclosing the abuse, displayed tremendous courage by seeking help.
Assistant District Attorney Elliot Stone of the Domestic Violence Unit commended the victim’s bravery in coming forward.
Stone noted that Hickman admitted his guilt but attempted to shift blame to alcohol and even suggested that the victim shared responsibility.
Hickman’s sentence includes 20 years in prison without parole, followed by lifelong probation.
He is prohibited from contacting the victim and her family, must undergo psycho-sexual evaluation, seek substance abuse treatment, and adhere to sex offender special conditions.
Cherokee County District Attorney Susan K. Treadaway emphasized the profound betrayal of trust exhibited by Hickman, who manipulated the victim’s vulnerability for his own gratification.
Treadaway expressed the hope that the victim and her family could find solace in knowing that justice has been served and that Hickman would not harm another individual in this way again..