While investigating homicide, detectives discover woman sexually assaulted 4-year-old girl

Sherry Lynden will spend 12 to 19 years in prison for the sexual assault of a 4-year-old girl. 

A Hickory woman will spend at least 12 years in prison after she pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 4-year-old girl. 

Sherry Lynden, 28, was convicted of statutory sex offense with a child on Tuesday, March 5. She could serve up to 19 years. 

According to the DA for the 36th District, which includes Burke, Caldwell and Catawba counties, the offense occured on Jan. 1, 2018, but was discovered in the midst of a homicide investigation that began in August 2018. 

David Barnes was arrested and charged with the death of Roger Hoglan, and a forensic search was done on his phone. The search uncovered images that showed sexual activity between Lynden and the 4-year-old victim. Lynden had sent Barnes the photos from her phone. 

Barnes has been charged with murder and sexual exploitation. He has not yet been to trial.