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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Louisiana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Former Fort Polk Soldier Sentenced to Life in Prison for Sexually Abusing a Minor

LAFAYETTE, La. – Acting United States Attorney Alexander C. Van Hook announced that Ronald W. Allen, Jr., 41, was sentenced by United States District Judge Jay C. Zainey to spend life in prison for sexual abuse of a minor. Allen was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $72,000.

After a two-day trial in August 2019, a federal jury handed down a guilty verdict on all counts against Ronald W. Allen, Jr., a former Fort Polk Army Soldier, for sexually abusing a minor under the age of 12 years old.

According to evidence presented during trial, from April 2012 until June 2016 the defendant sexually abused the minor on numerous occasions on the Fort Polk Military Base, where the defendant lived. The abuse was exposed when the minor gave details to an individual at a school she was attending in a community near Fort Polk.  Local police were later notified, the victim was interviewed, and a warrant was executed on the defendant’s residence. Agents obtained DNA evidence from where abuse occurred and matched it to the defendant’s DNA.

“This sentence sends a clear message that those who abuse children will be brought to justice. These crimes are particularly heinous because children put their trust in adults and especially those who serve in the United States Military. This office will make it a priority to continue to prosecute these difficult cases to help provide safer communities for all of our children,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Van Hook.

The FBI, U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command, and the Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys John Luke Walker and Daniel J. Vermaelen prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a U.S. Department of Justice nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse.  Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood combines federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.  For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

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The year 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of the Department of Justice. Learn more about the history of our agency at www.Justice.gov/Celebrating150Years.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated August 18, 2020