Independence Man Pleads Guilty to Felony Carnal Knowledge Charges in Ascension Parish

          Last week, Howard Landers of 55545 Mashon Rd. Independence, LA., age 38, pled guilty to Felony Carnal Knowledge of a Juvenile (2 counts). Landers was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Joni Buquoi, and presiding over this matter was the Honorable Judge Jessie LeBlanc. This guilty plea was the result of a plea agreement with prosecutors following a 2016 investigation conducted by the Gonzales Police Department. 

          On September 23, 2016, detectives with the Gonzales Police Department made contact with a 16-year-old juvenile female who had been reported missing from St. Helena Parish. The juvenile was located at an area business accompanied by Howard Landers. During the course of the investigation, detectives learned that the juvenile ran away from her St. Helena Parish residence with Landers. Detectives also learned that Landers had engaged in consensual sexual intercourse with the juvenile on two occasions while in the Gonzales area. Landers, who was a registered sex offender at the time of this incident, was subsequently arrested and booked into the Ascension Parish Jail. Landers has a prior conviction for Attempted Rape in Tangipahoa Parish. 

          Upon entering a guilty plea to the above-mentioned charges, as per the plea agreement with prosecutors, Landers was sentenced to 5 years with the Louisiana Department of Corrections with credit for time served on each count. The imposed sentences are to run consecutive to one another for a total of 10 years. Upon release from incarceration, Landers must register and notify as a sex offender or child predator for life.