Ex-priest sentenced to 25 years in jail for preying on males in New Orleans

Usman Deen
Usman Deen

World Courant

A former Louisiana Catholic priest who preyed 17 males who had been drunk or in want of assist, drugged and photographed them — and sexually assaulted no less than a dozen of them — had been sentenced Friday to 25 years in jail.

Decide Shayna Beevers Morvant of the twenty fourth Judicial District Court docket handed down the decision to former priest, Stephen Sauer, 61, after pleading Friday to 13 counts of sexual assault, 9 counts of third-degree rape, and 17 counts of video voyeurism and 16 felony counts of drug prices, in accordance with a press launch from the District Legal professional of Jefferson Parish, which is in southeastern Louisiana and a part of the larger New Orleans space. The decide additionally ordered Mr Sauer to register as a intercourse offender and banned him from contacting 12 of the victims for all times.

Over a two-year interval starting within the fall of 2019, prosecutors stated, Mr. Sauer on dozens of males in numerous states of misery and fragility in New Orleans’ French Quarter, a neighborhood frequented by vacationers and identified for its nightlife. In some instances, he would numb their drinks or give them “sleep-inducing substances,” prosecutors stated.

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Pretending to assist them, he would return them to his house in Metairie, La., the biggest metropolis in Jefferson Parish, prosecutors stated. He then photographed or videotaped them and sexually assaulted a few of them, prosecutors stated. Mr Sauer usually shared pictures of the victims on-line and in e-mail correspondence with others, the prosecutor’s workplace added.

Most of the victims had been visiting from out of state, misplaced or separated from associates.

One of many medicine that Mr. Sauer used to incapacitate victims was Zolpidem, a narcotic to deal with insomnia that has additionally been used as a date-rape drug, prosecutors stated. A few of the victims had been recognized as a result of investigators discovered driver’s licenses and different figuring out info amongst pictures Mr. Sauer had made.

Detectives estimate there could possibly be greater than 50 further victims who had not been recognized.

A lawyer for Mr Sauer didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon Monday.

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Prosecutors stated Stephen Sauer preyed on 17 males in numerous states of misery and vulnerability in New Orleans’ French Quarter. Credit score…Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Workplace

The Jefferson Parish District Legal professional’s workplace declined to touch upon the case.

Previous to his 2021 arrest, Mr. Sauer’s LinkedIn profile confirmed that he was the chief director of Arc of Better New Orleans, a nonprofit group devoted to bettering the lives of individuals with disabilities. Previous to that, he served as a college member on the College of San Francisco, a personal Jesuit college. He additionally spent 4 years as a pastor at a Roman Catholic church in New Orleans.

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The Arc of Better New Orleans didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark Monday. The church the place Mr. Sauer had served as pastor declined to remark.

The Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Workplace started investigating Mr. Sauer in June 2021 after he despatched his laptop to an electronics retailer for restore.

“He despatched a tough drive to a spot in New York for restore,” stated Jason Rivarde, a spokesman for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Workplace. “And a few issues had been found on that arduous drive that led to the investigation.”

A technician on the retailer discovered lots of of pictures on Mr Sauer’s laborious drive of the victims suggesting that they had been sexually assaulted, the prosecutor’s workplace stated. Legislation enforcement in New York alerted Louisiana authorities, who started an investigation. Mr Sauer was arrested in December 2021, Mr Rivarde stated.

Ex-priest sentenced to 25 years in jail for preying on males in New Orleans

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