Authorities: Leesville man planned to buy, rape child - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Authorities: Leesville man planned to buy, rape child

Ernest Kickel Jr. (Source: State Police) Ernest Kickel Jr. (Source: State Police)
LEESVILLE, LA (KPLC) - A 66-year-old Leesville man has been accused of trying to buy and rape a 10-year-old, state police said.

Scott Moreau, spokesman for Troop E, said Ernest Kickel Jr. was arrested Monday on charges of attempted aggravated rape and trafficking of children for sexual purposes.

"The state police Special Victims Unit received information from the Vernon Parish Sheriff's Office Task Force in reference to Kickel," Moreau said. "They advised that they had received information that Kickel Jr. was attempting to buy a 10-year-old child for sexual purposes."

Moreau said items were located in Kickel's residence corroborating his plan to have sex with a minor child.

“This is one of the most disturbing incidents that law enforcement has encountered,” said Vernon Parish Sheriff Sam Craft. “The protection of our children will always be handled in a swift and decisive manner and with this type of behavior the Vernon Parish Sheriff's Department will always respond accordingly.”

“State police are committed to investigating and arresting those who sexually exploit and victimize our children," said state police superintendent Colonel Mike Edmonson. "These are atrocious crimes that threaten the most innocent of victims, our children. We will take a firm stance against those that choose to engage in this type of hideous illegal activity. Our investigators will be proactive with investigative procedures and will deploy every resource available to intercept and arrest these types of criminals.”

Bond was set at $1.5 million.

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