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Wednesday, August 21, 2019



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Convicted sex offender files appeal

Convicted sex offender files appeal

A court will consider the appeal of a 38-year-old Golden Meadow man convicted of sexually abusing his girlfriend’s daughter two years ago.

After hearing a day of testimony July 15, a jury unanimously convicted Rusty LeBouef of one count of indecent behavior with a juvenile. LeBouef was originally charged with sexual battery, but the charge was amended to indecent behavior with a juvenile due to the nature of the crime, prosecutors said.

District Court Judge Buddy Larose sentenced LeBouef on Sept. 21 to 15 years in prison.

In addition to the jail time, LeBoeuf must register as a sex offender. The first two years of the sentence is without parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

LeBoeuf’s attorney, Teresa King, of Houma, objected to the sentence and asked the judge to reconsider, but the request was denied. LeBouef then brought the matter to the Louisiana 1st Circuit Court of Appeal, which will consider the case Thursday.

Court filings show LeBouef contends his 15-year sentence at hard labor is excessive. Prosecutors argue the sentence is significantly less than the 25 years he could have received.

“The appellant’s 15-year sentence is significantly less than the maximum term of incarceration which could have been imposed,” Assistant District Attorney Joe Soignet said in his brief. “Further, the trial court correctly noted that the defendant’s prior felony convictions, as well as the harm caused to the victim in this matter, justified the sentence imposed.”

Detectives began investigating LeBoeuf after receiving a complaint in June 2017, the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office said.

LeBoeuf was arrested July 14, 2017, after an anonymous Crime Stoppers tip led deputies to a home on East 48th Street in Cut Off, where they found him hiding in a closet, authorities said.

The 12-year-old victim told detectives LeBoeuf had put his genitals in her hand, authorities said.

The appellate court will render a decision in about six weeks.

LeBouef is serving his sentence in the Dixon Correctional Institute in Jackson.

 

-- Daily Comet Staff Writer Dan Copp can be reached at 448-7639 or at dan.copp@houmatoday.com. Follow him on Twitter @DanVCopp.