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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Man indicted for coercing minors for sex; wife accused of trying to persuade victim to recant

Alleged victimization occurred during a two-year period

SAVANNAH, GA:  A Bryan County man and his wife are charged in separate federal indictments with coercing minors for sex and tampering with a witness.

Michael Wilson, 37, is charged with one count each of Coercion and Enticement of a Minor to Engage in Sexual Activity, and Attempted Coercion and Enticement of a Minor to Engage in Sexual Activity, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. The charges carry possible sentences of up to life in prison, and there is no parole in the federal system.

Lori Wilson, a/k/a “Loretta Lightningbolt,” 34, is charged in a separate federal indictment with Tampering with a Victim or Witness, a charge that carries a possible sentence of up to 20 years in prison, along with up to five years of supervised release.

“Exploitation of children is inexcusable,” said U.S. Attorney Christine. “Our office and law enforcement partners will aggressively pursue and bring to justice anyone who would victimize the most vulnerable among us.”  

According to court documents and testimony, Michael Wilson is accused of attempting to coerce multiple minor victims to engage in sexual activity from 2017 through early 2019. After the minors reported the information to authorities, Lori Wilson “did knowingly intimidate, corruptly persuade, and engage in misleading conduct,” the indictment states, in an effort to persuade one of the victims to “withhold information regarding… reports of sexual assault.”

Lori Wilson, the indictment states, attempted to persuade the victim that the minor’s experiences were “psychic visions” or “dreams” in an effort “to prevent truthful communication of information relating to the possible commission of a federal offense to agents of the Army Criminal Investigation Division.” 

“The allegations in this indictment are disturbing in many different ways,” said Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta, Chris Hacker. “The FBI will make every effort to protect our most vulnerable members of society from adults who choose to prey on them.”

Criminal indictments contain only charges; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

The cases were investigated by the FBI and by the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command, and prosecuted for the United States by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Katelyn Semales and Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer G. Solari.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Contact: 
Barry L. Paschal, Public Affairs Officer: 912-652-4422
Press Release Number: 
116-19
Updated November 12, 2019