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James Howard Found Guilty

Source: IMPD 

Man Found Guilty of Molesting Child at Park in Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS–A man from Indianapolis has been found guilty of molesting a child at a park in August 2022.

The trial for 52-year-old James Howard Jr. lasted three days this week. He was found guilty of child molesting, kidnapping, and criminal confinement.

Court documents say the incident happened at the Legacy Park of Hope on Forest Manor Avenue. That is near East 34th Street and North Sherman Drive, which is on the northeast side of Indianapolis. The girl who was assaulted is 11 years old. Police say she told them that she had been sitting on a bench, watching a show on her phone, when Howard came up behind her, stuck a black rag in her mouth and dragged her near a fence.

After forcing himself on her, the girl said she was able to keep kicking an punching the man until he left. Investigators were able to find Howard with help from the community.

The victim lives outside of Indiana. On Sunday, special victim prosecutors were able to fly to the victim back to Indianapolis and accompany her, so she could testify during the trial. After a guilty verdict was reached, a victim advocate was able to escort the survivor safely back home.

“The young survivor in this case has repeatedly shown admirable courage throughout this extremely difficult process. Her testimony ultimately put law enforcement and prosecutors in a position to ensure that the defendant cannot harm others in our community. This case demonstrates our trial teams’ willingness to go above and beyond to secure justice on behalf of victims and their families,” said Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears.

Howard faces decades in prison. He will be sentenced September 25.