October 12, 2023

Man Pleads Guilty to Forcible Rape of a Victim Under Age 13

District Attorney Warren Montgomery reports that today (October 12, 2023), 39 year-old Craig Cato pled guilty to his charge of forcible rape in advance of his Monday morning trial set before District Judge John Keller.

On March 8, 2021, the now adult victim reported having been repeatedly raped and sexually molested by the defendant when she was between the ages of 5 to 12. The victim told St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office detectives that she delayed disclosing the abuse because the defendant threatened to harm her and her family if the abuse was disclosed to anyone.

The victim reported that the defendant had written her letters apologizing for the abuse, and she provided one letter to the Sheriff’s Office in which the defendant referenced the "evil acts" he committed and asked for forgiveness.

Cato is set to be sentenced to 30 years in prison without parole on Monday, October 16th. Detective Angelica Lopez of the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office investigated the case and Assistant District Attorney Christina Fisher prosecuted the case.

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