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Wednesday, June 19, 2019

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Raceland man convicted of aggravated rape

Raceland man convicted of aggravated rape

A Raceland man was convicted Friday afternoon of three counts of aggravated rape after a four-day jury trial.

Christopher Gaudet, 31, a resident of 388 Greenville Street in Raceland, was accused of committing several acts of oral sexual intercourse over a period of time with three separate juvenile victims, all under the age of thirteen.

“You have to give all of the credit to the children, for the bravery they showed in coming to court and testifying,” said First Assistant District Attorney Kristine Russell, who prosecuted the case. “Prosecuting these crimes is traumatic, even for adult victims and witnesses. As these children grow up, they will not only know that justice was done, but that they played the most important role in accomplishing it.”

Gaudet was also standing trial on three counts of cruelty to juveniles, as it was also alleged that he had beaten the same victims as well. However, Gaudet chose to plead guilty to those counts Thursday afternoon, after the State had rested its case and before he testified in his own defense.

Aggravated rape carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison without the benefit of probation, parole or suspension of sentence.

“This verdict means that a child predator will spend the rest of his life in prison,” said District Attorney Camille A. Morvant, II. “We are always satisfied when we can protect all children from such men, whether they are his actual or potential victims.”

In addition to the testimony of the children, the State presented evidence obtained by LPSO investigators as well as forensic interviews conducted by Shannan Gros of the Child Advocacy Center of Lafourche.

Formal sentencing in this matter is set for December 1, 2015 before the Hon. Steven M. Miller, who presided over the case. In addition to the life sentences on the three counts of aggravated rape, Gaudet faces up to ten years in prison for each count of cruelty to juveniles.