Man sentenced to one year in prison for indecent behavior with juvenile

Published 3:56 pm Tuesday, March 14, 2023

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VIDALIA, La. — A Jackson man who had been living in Vidalia was sentenced to one year in prison for indecent behavior with a juvenile last week.

Retired Sixth Judicial District Court Judge John D. Crigler, who is filling in for Seventh Judicial District Court Judge Kathy Johnson, passed sentence to Johnathan Mace, 31.

Mace, who was initially charged been charged with computer-aided solicitation of a minor, indecent behavior with juveniles, aggravated assault on a police officer and felony criminal damage to property, has been sentenced to one-year hard labor with 35 days credit for time served for the lesser charge of indecent behavior with juveniles.

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He pleaded guilty to the charge on March 8, court records show.

Neither Louisiana Seventh Judicial District Attorney Brad Burget or his assistant Austin Lipsey, who prosecuted the case, could be reached for comment on the other charges as of Tuesday. No information was available on the status of the other charges.

According to news reports, Mace was arrested in May 2022 near the Vidalia riverfront, where he’d been living in a camper trailer for over a year.

Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputies stopped Mace at approximately 9 p.m. when he reportedly put his vehicle in reverse when deputies ordered him to step out of the vehicle. He then accelerated backward at “a high rate of speed, ramming a police vehicle, striking one deputy and narrowly missing others,” authorities said in a news release.

“Due to the use of deadly force against deputies, shots were fired, at which time the vehicle was disabled, and the subject was placed under arrest,” the release states.

Authorities said he contacted a minor online, sending “lewd photos” and requesting the same from the child before arranging to meet the child that night.

“When a sex offender victimizes a child, that child carries the pain and suffering with them for their entire life,” Concordia Parish Sheriff David Hedrick states in the press release. “The family as a whole suffers when a child is victimized. As your Sheriff, I refuse to allow child victimization and illegal narcotics that plague our community to go unaddressed.

“I assure the citizens of our parish that I and the CPSO deputies would rather take this fight to the sex offenders and to the illegal drug distributors so that our families do not have to combat this in their homes.

“I would rather fight this criminal element in the streets to help preserve our families’ way of life. Our families should not have to deal with these issues alone. It’s past time to take a hard stand for our family and their right to enjoy a peaceful life.

“Myself and the CPSO deputies humbly serve all Concordia Parish citizens. I want the residents of our parish to know that my God is first in my life, followed by my wife, family and the citizens of our parish. I will never stop fighting for the citizens of Concordia Parish.”