Kidnapping, domestic violence charged

A Clinton couple has been arrested and charged in an alleged missing child, domestic violence case; suspect placed on leave from teaching job at Emerald High School.

On September 21, 2018 at approximately 8:30 P.M. Deputies were dispatched to a call for service about a two-month-old infant being kidnapped by the babysitter. Upon arrival, Deputies were informed by the child’s mother that the babysitter, Jennifer Bunting (English), had not returned her child and had stopped communicating with her.
Deputies located the infant with Mrs. Bunting at a residence in Joanna around midnight. Mrs. Bunting was arrested for kidnapping and unlawful conduct toward a child. Investigators learned that Mrs. Bunting had smoked marijuana around the infant, therefore the infant was taken to the Hospital in Laurens to be evaluated and treated.

While investigating this incident, Investigators learned that Mrs. Bunting’s husband, David English, was aware of his wife’s drug addiction, and admittedly had participated in taking her to obtain illegal drugs on previous occasions. Investigators also learned that Mr. English had assaulted his wife earlier in the week during a dispute over her whereabouts on this day, causing significant injuries to her body.

On September 24, 2018 Investigators obtained an arrest warrant on Mr. English for Domestic Violence 2nd Degree as well as unlawful conduct toward a child. Mr. English turned himself in at the Johnson Detention Center where he was booked on this charge and is now awaiting a bond hearing. Both suspects are in their 30s, and reside at 217 Milam Rd., Clinton, and English is the pastor of New Hope Baptist Church, Clinton, and a social studies teacher and coach since 2007 at Emerald High School, Greenwood, a report said. Bunting's bond was set at $45,000. English's bond was set at $12,000 each on 2 charges.

“This was a terrible incident but luckily we found the baby before this turned out to be much more tragic than it already is. Hopefully this lady will stay behind bars where she can’t put any more children in danger. As for Mr. English, this guy is a preacher as well as a teacher in another county. It is very disturbing to think that someone in his position, which makes him a role model to our youth, would assist his wife in purchasing illegal drugs or would assault a woman. We will continue to incarcerate these types of violent offenders and put it in the hands of the prosecution.” - Sheriff Don Reynolds 


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