Former St Tammany Parish sheriff arrested on numerous sex crime charges

Former longtime St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Jack Strain, who was sheriff for 20 year until June 2016, has for months been the subject of a federal corruption probe and state investigation into alleged sex crimes against juveniles. Yesterday, Strain was booked on charges of rape and incest, District Attorney Warren Montgomery announced Tuesday (June 11) at a hastily-called news conference.

(Strain is pictured below in his booking photo from St Tammany Parish jail)

Strain, age 56, was charged in a grand jury indictment with two counts of aggravated rape, two counts of aggravated incest, indecent behavior with a juvenile and sexual battery, Montgomery’s office said. He was being held in the parish jail in lieu of $400,000 bond on Tuesday afternoon.

The former sheriff is accused of committing sex crimes against four different victims, including two under the age of 12, according to the indictment. He is accused of committing aggravated rape against one victim between June 1, 1979, and July 19, 1980, and against another victim between Jan. 1, 1975, and Sept. 8, 1981, the indictment shows. Strain would have been 12 years old in January 1975.

According to DA Montgomery, Strain is accused of committing aggravated incest on a third victim and committing indecent behavior with the same victim, all between April 1, 1996, and July 1, 2002. In addition, he is accused of committing aggravated incest and sexual battery against a fourth victim on or about June 1, 2004.

Montgomery said his office was presented with evidence in the fall of 2017 by Louisiana State Police, the FBI and the IRS that Strain had engaged in sex crimes. Over the next 18 months, his office conducted an investigation that also included the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, leading to Tuesday’s grand jury indictment.

@WRJW