APPEAL FROM THE TWENTY-FOURTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT COURT PARISH
OF JEFFERSON, STATE OF LOUISIANA NO. 16-4465, DIVISION
"E" HONORABLE JOHN J. MOLAISON, JR., JUDGE
COUNSEL FOR PLAINTIFF/APPELLEE, STATE OF LOUISIANA Paul D.
Connick, Jr. Terry M. Boudreaux, Gail D. Schlosser, Blair C.
Constant, Rachel L. Africk
COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLANT, JOSE MORENO CERVANTES AKA
IVAN MORENO Holli A. Herrle-Castillo
composed of Judges Susan M. Chehardy, Fredericka Homberg
Wicker, and Stephen J. Windhorst
M. CHEHARDY, CHIEF JUDGE
appeal, defendant challenges the trial court's ruling on
the State's motion in limine regarding prior
reports of abuse that did not lead to prosecution. For the
following reasons, we affirm defendant's conviction and
27, 2017, a Jefferson Parish Grand Jury returned an
indictment charging defendant, Jose Moreno Cervantes a/k/a
Ivan Moreno, with first degree rape of a known juvenile,
J.G.,  where the victim was under the age of
thirteen, in violation of La. R.S. 14:42. Defendant pled
not guilty at his arraignment on July 28, 2017.
April 30, 2018, trial before a twelve-person jury commenced.
After two days of testimony and evidence, the jury
unanimously returned a verdict of guilty as charged. On May
7, 2018, the trial court sentenced defendant to life
imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole,
probation, or suspension of sentence and notified defendant
of his lifetime obligation to register as a sex offender in
accordance with La. R.S. 15:540, et seq. After
sentencing, the trial court granted defendant's motion
August 26, 2015, Dana Williams-Sanders, who is social worker
at several elementary schools in Jefferson Parish, saw J.G.,
a former student at her school, walking to school with her
sister. Ms. Williams-Sanders observed that J.G. - a
twelve-year-old sixth grader - was noticeably pregnant. Ms.
Williams-Sanders reported her observations to the elementary
school officials, who alerted the police, child protection,
and a health services clinic.
August 31, 2015, Detective Tyler Lopez of the Westwego Police
Department met with J.G. and her mother, T.A., who reported
that the mother's ex-boyfriend, Jose Cervantes a/k/a Ivan
Moreno, had impregnated J.G. On September 14, 2015, Erica
Dupepe of the Children's Advocacy Center interviewed
J.G., who disclosed that defendant had raped her three times.
trial, J.G., who was, by then, fifteen years old, testified
that defendant did a "bad thing" to her three
times. J.G. indicated that the first incident occurred when
she was twelve years old. That day, she was in her bedroom
coloring while her mother was taking a shower and her sisters
were playing outside. That time, defendant came into her
room, touched her chest, pulled down her pants, and put his
"private part" inside her "front part."
She testified that she cried while "it" happened,
which was a long time. After defendant stopped, he just went
back into her mother's room. J.G. did not tell anyone
because she was afraid defendant was going to hurt her.
testified that the second incident occurred in her
mother's car when defendant, his friend, she, and her
sisters were going to Wal-Mart to buy groceries for her
mother. After defendant dropped her sisters and his friend at
Walmart, he drove J.G. to the back of a nearby apartment
complex, got into the backseat with her, and put his
"private part" into her. Afterwards, defendant went
to a nearby fast food ...