Opening arguments and first witness take stand in Jack Strain trial in St. Tammany Parish

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COVINGTON (WGNO)– Opening arguments were heard today in the sexual abuse trial of former St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Jack Strain. Now they are hearing testimony of the alleged sexual abuse of young boys before and during his time as Sheriff.

Both the State and the Defense presented their opening arguments, the State trying to prove that Jack Strain had a pattern of sexual abuse; while the Defense tried to prove that the victims were manipulated by the FBI to come forward to take down a powerful Sheriff.

In Opening Arguments, the DA’s office said over a 25 year period, the alleged aggravated rape, incest and indecent behavior with multiple boys took place. The alleged abuse was said to occur when Strain was a teenager through adulthood. The alleged abuse was said to take place on camping and fishing trips, and in the Strain’s family-owned fireworks stand camper.

Strain’s lawyer told jurors the 4 victims in this trial are either the manipulators or were manipulated by the FBI because of involvement in a work release program that was being investigated by the FBI that began in 2017. All the victims came forward about the abuse after that date.

30 witnesses are expected to take the stand. Today, an IRS agent was questioned as to what the alleged abuse victims told him.

If convicted of aggravated rape, Strain could face life in prison.

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