Ocean City Today

Woman gets time served for attack

Hinkley sentenced to three years’ probation and $245 fine after stabbing boyfriend
By Katie Tabeling | Apr 13, 2017
File Photo

(April 14, 2017) Circuit Court Judge Thomas Groton sentenced Kimberly Hinkley to three years’ probation, including two years supervised, on Monday in Snow Hill after she pleaded guilty to slashing her boyfriend during a drunken argument.

Hinkley, 50, of Ocean City, was originally charged with attempted second-degree murder, first-degree assault, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and possessing a dangerous weapon for attacking Mark James Bell in November. She pleaded guilty to second-degree assault, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison or a $2,500 fine, citing her reoccurring alcohol abuse.

“I don’t know what it is when I drink, but I get in trouble. At 50, I’m tired of it and I’m ready to get a grip on it,” Hinkley told the court.

According to a statement of facts, Hinkley had called Bell on Nov. 14 and later met him in West Ocean City to buy an 18-pack of beer and two bottles of whiskey. The couple later went to a storage unit in West Ocean City to “hang out and drink.” During the early hours of Nov. 15, Bell and Hinkley apparently argued, and Hinkley stabbed Bell in the chest with a pocket knife.

Bell then went to the W.A.C.S. Health Center for help, and was later taken to Peninsula Regional Medical Center in Salisbury to be treated for a 2-centimeter cut on his chest.

Bell was uncooperative with Maryland State Police when he was interviewed, and told varying accounts of how he was slashed. He eventually said that “Kim stabbed him.”

Police later pulled footage at the storage unit that showed Bell spilling his beer and grabbing his chest. A woman, later identified as Hinkley, was seen leaving the storage unit on bike.

Hinkley evaded Worcester County Sheriffs, Ocean City Police and state police, even though the search included K-9 units and a helicopter. After receiving a tip on her whereabouts, police arrested her at a West Ocean City residence on Nov. 20.

Hinkley’s attorney, Steven Rakow, explained to the court that she was homeless and lost her job that day the incident occurred.

“What happened is unknown, since she and Mark finished the whiskey bottles and 16 of the 18 beers, and Mark has told several stories,” Rakow said.

After refusing to testify for the state, Bell told the judge that as far as he knew Hinkley did not stab him.

“I’ve known her for 10 years, and I’ve never seen her gone after anyone or me with a weapon, which is why I’m confused that she’s pleading guilty,” Bell said. “I don’t know what I told the cops, because I was pretty drunk. I might have cut myself.”

According to court records, Hinkley has faced assault charges before — in 2009, 2010 and 2014 — but was not found guilty of any of them. She also was charged four times for DUI in the last decade, and was charged with harassment in 1990.

When he sentenced Hinkley, Groton told her that this was a wakeup call to seek treatment for her alcoholism.

“You haven’t done anything about it,” he said. “I recommend you seek counseling to remain out of trouble.”

In addition to probation, Groton gave Hinkley credit for the 141 days she spent incarcerated. She was also asked to pay $500 fine, but suspended a majority of it. In the end, she paid $245 in fines and court costs.

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