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Press Release

North Charleston Man Sentenced in Federal Court for Failure to Register as a Sex Offender

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of South Carolina

Columbia, South Carolina---- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon stated today that James  Kenneth  Purcell, age 45, of North Charleston, South Carolina was sentenced in federal court in Charleston, South Carolina, for Failure to Register as a Sex Offender, a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2250(a). United States District Judge David C. Norton, of Charleston, sentenced Purcell to 30 months imprisonment followed by 5 years of supervised release.

Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that in 1995 Purcell was convicted in the State of New York of 3rd degree rape, which required him to register as a sex offender in any state where he lived, worked or attended school.  After serving his sentence, Purcell later moved to Maine and first registered there in January 2004. In 2008, while living in Maine, Purcell was convicted of Unlawful Sexual Contact for which he received a sentence of 2 years and 6 months. Purcell last registered in Maine on April 25, 2016.  Purcell subsequently moved to New Hampshire where he initially registered in July 2016 and last registered on November 21, 2016.  In late November 2016, Purcell left New Hampshire without notifying authorities and moved to South Carolina. Purcell failed to register as a sex offender in South Carolina despite being required to do so under law, and he was arrested in North Charleston by the United States Marshals Service Operation Intercept Fugitive Task Force on July 12, 2017.

The case was investigated by the United States Marshals Service with the assistance of the Raymond, New Hampshire Police Department, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, and North Charleston Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorney Dean H. Secor of the Charleston office prosecuted the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information, please visit



Dean Secor (843) 727-4381

Updated June 14, 2018