VIDLIA, La. – A Vidalia, Louisiana man suspected of illegally soliciting sex from a minor online reportedly hit an aide at the Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office with his vehicle while they were in the process of arresting him. The deputy is okay, authorities said later.
A CPSO press release states that at about 9 p.m. Tuesday on the riverbank of Vidalia, 31-year-old Johnathan Mace put his vehicle in reverse when officers ordered him to get out of the vehicle. He accelerated backwards at “high speed, rammed into a police vehicle, hit a deputy sheriff and narrowly missed others.”
“Shots were fired for the use of deadly force against officers, after which the vehicle was disabled and the subject was arrested,” the press release said.
Mace had lived in a RV on Vidalia’s riverbank for more than a year, the sheriff’s office said.
He is believed to have contacted a minor online, sent “indecent photos” and demanded the same from the child before making an appointment with the child on Tuesday night.
Mace has been charged with computer-aided solicitation of a minor, indecent behavior with minors, aggravated assault on a police officer and criminal property damage.
The investigation is ongoing and further charges are pending, the sheriff’s office said.
“When a sex offender victimizes a child, that child carries the pain and suffering with him for the rest of his life,” said Concordia Parish Sheriff David Hedrick. The family as a whole suffers when a child is victimized. As your sheriff, I refuse to allow child abuse and illegal narcotics affecting our community to go unaddressed.
“I assure the citizens of our parish that I and the representatives of the CPSO would rather take up this fight against the sex offenders and the distributors of illegal drugs, so that our families do not have to fight this at home.
“I’d rather fight this criminal element on the streets to help preserve the way of life of our families. Our families should not be solving these problems alone. It is past time to take a hard line on our family and their right to a peaceful life.
“Myself and the CPSO delegates humbly serve all residents of Concordia Parish. I want the residents of our parish to know that my God comes first in my life, followed by my wife, family and the citizens of our parish. I will never stop fighting for the citizens of Concordia Parish.”