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Ex-officer given 14-year sentence in teen sexual assault case

A former police officer in New Orleans was sentenced to prison, convicted of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old teen rape victim.
New Orleans street scene
Posted at 7:58 PM, Mar 14, 2023

A former New Orleans police officer was sentenced to 14 years in federal prison convicted of sexually assaulting a now 15-year-old girl who was already being investigated at the time as the victim in a rape case. 

Prosecutors said officer Rodney Vicknair, 55, was assigned to escort the victim to a hospital to be examined in a rape investigation in 2020, when the victim was 14-years-old.

The victim, at the time, alleged she was raped by another man. 

Prosecutors said the officer tried to become close with the victim over time. According to court records, explicit photos of the victim were later found on the officer's phone. 

Vicknair is said to have attempted to become closer to the victim, communicating with her for months by phone and on social media, while in uniform, often stopping by her home unannounced. 

According to records, on Sept. 23, 2020, the officer arrived at the teenager's home and she got into his truck where he “intentionally touched her genitals under her clothing," the Justice Department said in a news release. 

Vicknair pleaded guilty in federal court to deprivation of rights and admitted that he "acted without a legitimate law enforcement purpose," the Justice Department said. 

According to Law & Crime, Vicknair was sentenced to twice as much time as he and the Biden administration’s Civil Rights Division in the Department of Justice had previously asked for.