Denham Springs woman arrested, accused of filing false rape comp - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

Denham Springs woman arrested, accused of filing false rape complaint against deputy

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Sherri Penton Sherri Penton

Louisiana State Police have arrested a Denham Springs woman and accused her of falsely accusing a Livingston Parish deputy of raping her. 

Troopers were called by the Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office in October to investigate the complaint of Sherri Penton, 38, an LSP spokesman said. 

The woman claimed that Penton raped her in the back of his police car. 

Detectives spoke to both people, and learned that they met on a dating website. They arranged a meeting at a Walker park. The stories differ there: The deputy said they had sex in the park's bathroom. Penton said he raped her in the back of his car. Penton made the complaint at a Baton Rouge hospital three days after the alleged incident, the spokesman said. 

Crime Lab technicians were able to collect DNA evidence from the park restroom that backed up the deputy's account, the spokesman said. They weren't able to find any evidence in the deputy's car that indicated Penton had ever even been in the car, he said. 

As a result of the month long investigation that included investigative support from analysts with the Louisiana State Analytical & Fusion Exchange Center (LA-SAFE), Troopers decided that Penton knowingly filed a false complaint alleging rape against the deputy, the spokesman said. Troopers obtained an arrest warrant for Penton, and she was arrested this week for Filing a False Complaint against Law Enforcement and Criminal Mischief.

Penton was booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison and was released the same day, records show. 

“The Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office takes every complaint that it receives seriously” said Sheriff Jason Ard. “My job and the job of this office is to investigate those complaints. The facts of any investigation reveal the validity of any complaint. In this particular incident, the evidence did not back up the accuser’s story. I appreciate the work of the LSP Troopers and those at the LSP Crime Lab and Fusion Center for their work in this case. I treated the allegations against one of my deputies seriously, and the work of the LSP found that the allegations against him were false."

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