The Louisiana Attorney General's Office has secured a conviction against a former Delcambre police officer, announced Attorney General Buddy Caldwell.
After a four-day trial, a Vermillion Parish jury found Ernest Billiot, 53, guilty of sexual battery and second-degree kidnapping. The conviction stems from a 2008 incident in which Billiot, a police officer at the time, abused his authority to detain and commit sexual acts upon an Erath woman.
While on patrol, Billiot pulled over the victim and told her she would have to come with him to the police station to take a breathalyzer test. The Delcambre Police Chief testified that there is no breathalyzer machine at the police department. Once alone at the police station, the officer told the victim he would need to strip search her and proceeded to commit a sexual battery upon her telling her she was pretty and asking if she had a boyfriend. The victim testified that she complied because he was a police officer with a gun. After bringing her back to her vehicle, the officer asked for the victim’s phone number and kissed her on the lips. The victim gave the officer a phone number which was one digit different from her own and watched the officer write the number on his wrist and hand area. The victim immediately called 911 when she returned home to report the incident. Billiot never called the stop into the dispatcher.
A pre-sentence investigation was ordered and a sentencing date has not yet been set in 15th Judicial District Court Judge Edward Broussard’s courtroom. Billiot faces a minimum of 10 years in prison and a maximum of 40 years in prison for the second-degree kidnapping charge. The sexual battery conviction carries a maximum term of 10 years in prison. Billiot was denied a post trial bond and was remanded into police custody once the verdict was returned.
Assistant Attorneys General Emma Devillier and Matthew Derbes prosecuted the case for the Attorney General's Office. They were assisted by A.G. Investigator Andrew Bergeron.