Linton man sentenced to 30 years in molestation case in Sullivan County
In an emotionally charged hearing, a Linton man was sentenced to spend three decades in prison for reportedly molesting his stepdaughter, whom he impregnated twice, since she was 13-years old.
William T. LaBaume, 55, pleaded guilty to a Class A felony count of child molesting in Sullivan Superior Court Tuesday morning.
He was sentenced to 30 years in the Indiana Department of Correction, with credit for 396 actual days served and 396 days credit time.
A Class B felony count of rape was dropped as part of the plea deal.
In addition, Judge H.R. Hunt set the sentence to run concurrent with any sentence issued in Greene County Circuit Court in a case -- in which he is charged with three counts of rape -- connected to the one in Sullivan County.
Greene County Circuit Court staff said LaBaume is next to appear before the judge at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 25 for a pre-trial hearing.
He is also now considered a sexually violent offender and must register for life on the Indiana Sex Offender Registry.
The Times does not release the names of victims in sexual abuse cases as a policy. During the sentencing hearing Monday, the victim addressed the court, telling LaBaume he "ruined my whole, entire life.
"I'm not your prisoner anymore," she said. "You said nobody would believe me, but I proved it."
According to both the Sullivan and Greene county affidavits prepared by former Linton Police Department Det. Sgt. Joshua Goodman, the female victim told him and other officers in July 2014 that LaBaume has allegedly raped her since she was a "young child."
She was first impregnated in 1997, the affidavits state, while she lived with LaBaume in Sullivan at age 13. The abuse continued, with the second child conceived in 2002 in Linton when she was 17.
In each case, the affidavits state that LaBaume attempted but failed to force the victim to miscarry both children by means of physical abuse.
"(The victim) advised that, during her second pregnancy, (LaBaume) took her to an abortion clinic in Illinois in an attempt to force (her) to have an abortion," they continue. "(She) advised that, upon arrival at the clinic, she went through some testing ... (and) she learned that she was too far along in her pregnancy ... (The victim) advised that (LaBaume) was angry so he physically battered (her) again."
The victim told Goodman that the abuse continued into her adult life and that, in fall 2013, LaBaume raped her and threatened her at a Linton apartment where she lived.
During that incident, LaBaume reportedly had a knife but injured himself when the victim struggled.
Though the victim reportedly cleaned the ensuing blood stains with bleach, the affidavits state investigators were able to obtain samples of blood located under carpet on July 15, 2014.
Testimony from interviews with the oldest child and the victim's mother corroborated this information, the affidavits state.
This blood sample was compared against the two children the victim claimed were LaBaume's. According to the affidavits, there was over a 99.99 percent match.
Additionally, the victim states LaBaume raped her again in October or November of 2013 in a secluded area of Greene County near the intersection of CRs 525N and 1175W.
The victim said "she had traveled to her mother and (LaBaume's) residence to pick up her two children," the affidavits state. She also said "upon her arrival, (LaBaume) jumped in (her) truck, grabbed her seatbelt and held her in the vehicle with it and placed a stun gun to her neck.
"(The victim) advised that (he) demonstrated the stun gun once to prove to her that it was working ... (and) forced her to drive into the country where he forced her to have sexual intercourse with (him)," they continue.
"I lost my whole family because of you," the victim told LaBaume during the hearing Tuesday, citing family issues that arose because of the charges. "I'm so messed up because of you ...
"I hate you," she continued. "I absolutely hate you."
When given time to make his own statement, LaBaume told the court, "I just want to tell my family I love them more than the world."