Henry Dinkins has been accused of killing Breasia Terrell.
Breasia, who was 10, was last seen either late July 9 or during the early morning hours of July 10 of 2020. She spent the night with her brother at Dinkins' home during the time period she disappeared. Dinkins, 48, is the boy's father. Breasia's remains were discovered on March 22 near DeWitt, and her identity was confirmed on March 31.
Dinkins has been charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping, Scott County Attorney Mike Walton said during a Wednesday morning news conference at the Davenport Police Department.
“While announcing charges is a significant step in this case, it is important to understand that bringing forth charges is not the end of the legal process but just the beginning,” Walton said. “The case will now proceed to court.”
A court date for the murder and kidnapping charges was not yet available Wednesday afternoon, but court documents provided some more details of what authorities believe occurred.
“On or about July 10, 2020, Henry Dinkins did remove a child, B.T., from 2744 East 53rd Street, Davenport, Iowa without consent or authority, or by deception, to secretly confine and inflict serious injury and as a result of the kidnapping B.T. was murdered,” according to the complaint and affidavit for the kidnapping charge.
Dinkins shot her to death, Walton said.
Walton said Dinkins was the only person being charged as of Wednesday.
According to a search warrant filed by Davenport Police Detective AJ Poirier on April 22 in Scott County District Court, on July 10, 2020, officers were sent to 2744 E. 53rd St., Apt. 8, to investigate the disappearance of a child.
Officers spoke to Dinkins, who told police that Breasia, his stepdaughter, was missing when he woke up. Dinkins also told police that Breasia had never run away before.
Dinkins girlfriend, Andrea Culberson, told police she had fallen asleep the night of July 9 at 11 p.m. or midnight. Culberson said that when she went to sleep, Dinkins was on the couch in the living room. Culberson was asleep in the living room and Breasia and her half-brother were asleep in the bedroom.
Culberson told police that she woke up about 3 a.m. July 10 and discovered Breasia and Dinkins gone. She attempted to call Dinkins, but he had left his cell phone at the apartment. At 7:17 a.m. Culberson texted Dinkins asking where he was. Culberson stated he was home after that.
When Dinkins came home he picked up his cell phone and then left, saying he was going to look for Breasia.
According to the search warrant, Dinkins' phone records show that Culberson attempted to call Dinkins at 3:11 a.m. and 3:12 a.m. Phone records indicate that Dinkins' phone was off when the calls were made. She called Dinkins again at 5:55 a.m. and the call duration was 40 seconds. Phone records also show an outgoing call to Culberson that is 10 seconds long at 6:01 a.m. Culberson attempted to call Dinkins again at 7:12 a.m. and 7:15 a.m., but Dinkins' phone was off during those times.
According to the search warrant, Dinkins had access to multiple vehicles, including a 2012 black Chevrolet Camaro and a 2007 Chevrolet Impala. The Impala was located within several blocks of the Police Department. The Camaro was in the parking lot of 2744 E. 53rd St. and was impounded by police.
On July 14, Culberson asked to speak to detectives. In a follow-up interview, she said that she had put Dinkins’ phone on a phone charger at 3 a.m., something she had not told police before. She also denied trying to call Dinkins even though phone records for Dinkins received from Verizon show she called him at approximately 3:11 a.m. and 3:12 a.m.
She also disclosed she had seen Dinkins after 3 a.m. on July 10 before he left again. She also said she saw a girl she believed to be Breasia standing outside by Dinkins’ red Impala. Culberson described Breasia as having distinct hair and seeing that girl with Breasia's hair.
Dinkins' cell phone was tracked to Clinton, where he was seen on video footage at 7:04 a.m. at Walmart buying two bottles of bleach. Dinkins then is tracked back to his trailer on Schmidt Road in Davenport at 8:20 a.m.
Dinkins was the lone person of interest in the case but had not been previously charged in connection with her disappearance. He had been held since July 10 and later charged with three unrelated counts of violating the sex-offender registry.
He is being held in the Clinton County Jail, where he was moved in August because of overcrowding in the Scott County Jail.
During Wednesday’s news conference the efforts of the investigation team were recognized. The officers in that team were identified as Lt. Kyle Chisholm, Sgt. Geoff Peiffer and detectives Maureen Hammes, Evan Obert and Sean Johnson.
The contributions of other agencies and citizens who assisted in the case, including the search for Breasia, were also acknowledged. The agencies included the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigations, the FBI and the sheriff’s offices of Scott and Clinton counties.