24 Mar Bourg Man Convicted of Aggravated Crime Against Nature Faces 99 Years
Lafourche Parish District Attorney Kristine Russell announced that a Bourg man charged with Aggravated Crime Against Nature in April of 2019 was convicted as charged by a Lafourche parish jury on Friday, March 24th. The Honorable F. Hugh Larose presided over the two-day trial.
Reuben Billiot, 41, sexually abused the child victim while the victim was at his home. Authorities were notified when the victim reported the abuse to a relative. The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office investigation led to the arrest of Reuben Billiot.
During the trial, the defense for Billiot claimed the accusations made against the defendant were a naive attempt of the victim to shift attention away from her because she had recently gotten in trouble. A claim prosecutors pointed out as not being supported by the evidence.
“During the forensic interview, the victim described what she thought, felt and heard – details that no child would ever know how to describe unless learned through a horrible experience,” said Assistant District Attorney Jason Chatagnier, who prosecuted the case along with Assistant District Attorney Alissa LeBoeuf. “Her story remained consistent despite having to face her abuser and complete strangers in open court. She is brave, and the truth was heard.”
The jury deliberated for just over two hours before returning a unanimous guilty verdict.
Chatagnier continued, “These types of cases are very difficult to prosecute because there are usually no witnesses. The case revolves around ‘do you believe the victim.’ Law Enforcement believes her, we believe her, and the jury, obviously, believes her too.”
The Honorable F. Hugh Larose ordered that Billiot be remanded into law enforcement custody pending his formal sentencing date of May 10th, 2023.
With this conviction, Reuben Billiot faces a minimum of 25 years and up to 99 years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections.