Portsia Smith covers Louisa County crime and news.
Man gets five years for molesting child in school bathroom
A Louisa County man who molested a 10-year-old boy in an elementary school bathroom will spend five years in prison.
Leslie Rayfield Johnson Jr., 46, of Apple Grove Road in Mineral was sentenced to 20 years in prison for aggravated sexual battery of a child under the age of 13.
Judge John Cullen suspended 15 of those years in Louisa County Circuit Court Tuesday to give Johnson an active sentence of five years.
The charges stem from a March 6 incident last year at Jouett Elementary School in Louisa.
Johnson was at the school to pick up a young family member, as he was authorized to do and had done several times before, school officials said.
School surveillance video played in court showed Johnson waiting at an office window for an extended amount of time before being noticed by any school employees. While waiting, a 10-year-old boy walked out of the office and into a nearby bathroom.
The video showed Johnson looking around before following the boy in the bathroom. Both were alone in the bathroom for several minutes before a school custodian entered the bathroom.
At that point, the video showed Johnson running out of the bathroom acting so strangely
that the custodian followed him back out.
While the custodian’s back was turned, the boy quietly walked out of the bathroom unnoticed.
An investigation started later that evening after the boy told his parents what happened.
Louisa authorities reviewed the video and within a few hours Johnson was identified, interviewed and arrested, according to Maj. Donnie Lowe of the Louisa County Sheriff’s Office.
Johnson, who has no prior criminal record, pleaded guilty to the felony charge in October.
Since the incident, Louisa School Superintendent Deborah Pettit said school administrators have increased security measures at all of the schools to try to prevent something like this from happening again. An employee will be placed at the front desk lobby at all times and restrooms will be clearly marked for either students or adults.
In the past, door monitors were stationed in the school’s front lobby, Pettit said, but had been eliminated due to budget restraints.