Louisiana man guilty of luring children to ‘birthday party,' giving them meth, alcohol

Louisiana man guilty of luring kids to ‘birthday party,’ giving them meth, alcohol

SLIDELL, La. — A Louisiana man has been found guilty of luring a group of children into his home and supplying them with methamphetamine and alcohol before sexually assaulting one of the girls, prosecutors said.

Lenard “Andy” Turpin, 52, of Slidell, was convicted Thursday of attempted indecent behavior with a juvenile younger than 13, possession of a Schedule II controlled dangerous substance and two counts of distribution of meth to a person younger than 18.

Turpin faces up to 30 years in prison for the distribution charges, according to District Attorney Warren Montgomery of the 22nd Judicial District of Louisiana. He faces up to 12.5 years for indecent behavior and up to two years for the possession charge.

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His sentencing is set for Sept. 9.

"This is a case of 'A Tale of Two Turpins,' who Mr. Turpin wants you to think he is, and who he actually is," prosecutors said at trial, according to Montgomery. "Mr. Turpin is a predator, and we can't allow that. We can believe his ridiculous version of events, or we can believe these girls, whose story hasn't changed in these last two years."

The victims testified at trial that Turpin picked the group up June 1, 2017, under the pretense that they would be attending his son's birthday party at his home, Montgomery said in a news release.

When they got there, the boy was not home and there was no party.

Instead, Turpin began drinking and smoking meth, and he coerced the children to do the same.

"Turpin then brought two of the juveniles upstairs, where he coerced them to smoke methamphetamine and attempted to get them to perform sexual acts on each other," Montgomery said. "Later, Turpin also groped and touched one of the girls while making sexual comments about her body."

The children were eventually picked up by the grandmother of one of the kids. They told their parents what happened, and the parents notified police.

The next day, St. Tammany Parish sheriff’s deputies conducted a search of Turpin’s home, where they found meth in his nightstand. He was arrested.

It took the jury just over four hours to return guilty verdicts against Turpin, Montgomery said.