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      Man sentenced to 25 years for sexual assaults near CCU

      Matthew Phillip Elkins

      After pleading guilty to two counts of First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct and one count of Assault with Intent to Commit First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct (CSC) on December 11, 2013, Matthew Phillip Elkins, 31, of Myrtle Beach was sentenced on Thursday to 25 years.

      The assaults started on March 7, 2011, when Elkins broke into a 21-year-old Coastal Carolina University student's apartment in the Fairways at Wild Wing subdivision.

      The victim reported to the police that she woke up to find a man sexually assaulting her while standing over her bed with a knife.

      Three months later, on June 6, 2011, another 20-year-old female Coastal student reported a similar attack just across the street from the March incident.

      The victim told police she was unable to identify the suspect, and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division generated a sketch using her description of the man.

      Lastly, on the night of August 24, 2011, a 20-year-old female student reported a home invasion in her apartment at University Suites in Conway, S.C. An unknown man entered her bedroom while she was asleep.

      When she woke up, she saw the man hovering over her and a struggle ensued between the two. After the victim was reportedly shoved into a nightstand, the suspect fled the area, leaving his cell phone behind.

      Police searched for the man the victim described and later located Elkins with a black eye.

      Additionally, police discovered Elkins had a knife in his possession that matched the description provided in the previous assaults.

      Throughout the investigation, police were able to put the cell phone found in the victim's room in Elkins' possession within hours before the attack.

      Elkins was arrested and charged for the third attack on August 24, 2011.

      By September 12, 2011, positive DNA test results led the police to charge Elkins with the March and June invasions as well.

      Elkins was charged with three counts of Burglary in the First Degree, Kidnapping, First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct, and two counts of Assault with Intent to Commit First Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct.

      Elkins must be incarcerated for 85% of his sentence before has any possibility of parole or release.

      Additionally, once released, Elkins will be required under South Carolina law to register himself as a Sex Offender for the remainder of his life.