St. Charles Herald-Guide

What next for boy accused of rape?

Shonna Riggs - January 31, 2007

The 10-year-old boy from Des Allemands being held at the St. James Parish Detention Center on a charge of aggravated rape is “scared” - and he may be going before a judge on Feb. 9.

Patricia Dennis, supervisor of social services for the center, told the Herald-Guide that the child arrived at the juvenile facility on Jan. 22 after his arrest by St. Charles Parish sheriff’s deputies.

And he is now receiving counseling and many other support services that the facility and the law provide for, she says.

“When he came in we processed him through admissions and assigned him to a dorm,” said Dennis, recounting the timeline.

“After that I met with him. And I will keep meeting with him as long as he’s here.

“He was really scared because some of the older children were calling him names. To calm him down I let him call his dad.

“Right now he is the youngest person in here, so we’ve assigned him to a dorm with kids who are not as violent and also are about his same size and close to his age.”

Dennis says the boy “seems to be in denial” about the events surrounding his arrest.

“I don’t know if he is guilty of these charges or not, but judging from the time I have spent with him so far, I think he’s going to need intense therapy to help him get through this,” Dennis said.

The child told Dennis that his mother told him that he may be released before his possible court date. If that happens, he would go back home to live with his parents.

“Once he leaves us, it’s up to the judge to determine whether or not he will go into more intense therapy,” she said. “We can’t help him after he is released - only the court can recommend that he receives any other kind of services.”

Dennis has a graduate degree in social work and has been working with the children at the St. James Parish Detention Center for 15 years.