Judge won’t hear case of ex-deputy charged with sex crimes

Published 4:10 pm Thursday, April 20, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

VIDALIA, La. — A Concordia Parish Judge is recusing herself from the case of a former deputy charged with indecent behavior with juveniles.

John Cowan, 45, was arrested in early March and charged with three counts of indecent behavior with juveniles, one count of carnal knowledge of a juvenile and one count of obstructing justice by intimidating a witness.

Anthony “Tony” Godbold, 35, is another former deputy accused of indecent behavior with juveniles at the same time as Cowan.

Email newsletter signup

Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office began investigating allegations of crimes against minors in December 2022. The investigation was later turned over to the Attorney General’s office because both Godbold and Cowan are former deputies.

Cowan was most recently employed as a deputy in Rapides Parish and also worked in Concordia Parish and LaSalle Parish.

Godbold is also being charged with introducing contraband into a Concordia Parish jail, where he was employed until his arrest.

Godbold’s cases are assigned to Division B Judge John Reeves and Cowan’s had been assigned to Division A Judge Kathy Johnson.

However, Johnson said Wednesday morning that she had signed a motion to recuse herself from Cowan’s case.

“I think Judge Reeves is going to recuse himself too,” Johnson said in court.

Concordia Parish District Attorney Brad Burget said, “I may do the same,” however, Burget added he is waiting on important case information before making a decision.

“It would be premature for me to do so at this time,” he added.

Burget moved to have Cowan’s arraignment reset for 9 a.m. on May 31.

“We have not received the investigative file from the Attorney General’s office,” Burget said.

Division B First Assistant District Attorney Joseph Boothe also said in court last Wednesday that he is also waiting on case files from the Attorney General’s office before continuing with Godbold’s arraignment. Godbold’s cases are scheduled to be continued at 9 a.m. on April 26.