Kaplan man arrested in alleged child molestation 20 years ago

Authorities have arrested a Kaplan man for an alleged sexual encounter with a child more than 20 years ago.

Henry Johnson, 57, was arrested Thursday on one count of molestation of a juvenile, who was under 10 at the time, Louisiana State Police Trooper Stephen Hammons said Friday in a news release.

The suspect is loosely affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America Evangeline Area Council, headquartered in Lafayette, council board member Gary McGoffin said.

McGoffin said Johnson might have been associated with the Boy Scouts as a parent 20 years ago.

State Police did not state the gender of the child, but McGoffin said the alleged victim is female.

Johnson was booked into the Vermilion Parish jail after meeting with detectives Thursday.

State Police were notified by agents with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security about the allegation, and worked with the Vermilion Parish Sheriff’s Office to investigate Johnson, the release states.

McGoffin said Homeland Security was involved in the case because a Boy Scout Evangeline Area Council board member is an agent with the federal agency and reported the allegation to Vermilion Parish authorities.

“My understanding was that he was in a support role as a parent” 20 years ago, McGoffin said.

Johnson faces 25 to 99 years in prison if convicted, with at least 25 years of the sentence served without a chance of parole or probation, according to the State Police release.

The release does not give Johnson’s home address.