New Orleans officer accused of molesting teen whose sex assault he was investigating, report says
A New Orleans police officer is behind bars, accused of molesting a teenage girl while he was investigating a separate sexual assault case in which she was the victim.
According to NOLA.com, 53-year-old Rodney Vicknair is charged with sexual battery, indecent behavior and malfeasance after being accused of molesting a 15-year-old girl, who he met while investigating a sexual assault report she had made against another person.
The New Orleans Police Department's Public Integrity Bureau began investigating after receiving a tip that Vicknair had "an inappropriate relationship with the victim."
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The 13-year police department veteran allegedly began texting the girl, telling her she was attractive and that she aroused him, a source who spoke on the condition of anonymity told NOLA.com. The source also said he fondled the teen.
Investigators obtained a warrant and arrested Vicknair at his home on Friday.
WDSU reports Vicknair was immediately placed on emergency suspension pending the outcome of the investigation.
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“Allegations against one of our own involving a juvenile is reprehensible,” Police Superintendent Shaun Ferguson said in a statement, according to FOX 8. “Upon learning of the situation, the NOPD took swift action against the accused officer. New Orleans police officers are held to a higher standard. We will not tolerate behavior that compromises the public trust or violates the law.”
If convicted, Vicknair could face up to 10 years in prison.