A massive federal sting operation targeting the New Orleans area led to the discovery of five missing teenagers and 30 sex offender arrests, authorities announced.
The US Marshals Service revealed in a recent press release that in an annual multi-agency initiative dubbed “Operation Boo Dat,” conducted between mid-October and late December, 17 of the 30 arrests were of those accused of felony sex offender registration violations.
The release went on to say that all five of the found teenagers were girls ranging between the ages of 14 and 17.
US Marshals said that among the arrests was one of a man who was wanted for raping a 12-year-old girl victim in an abandoned home on the West Bank of New Orleans. Another man was arrested for an alleged sexual assault of a 14-year-old girl in June in San Patricio County, Texas, according to the US Marshals.
Of found missing teens, one was a 16-year-old girl who ran away from her home in Marrero, New Orleans, after allegedly stealing a relative’s car and a handgun. That girl was discovered in a home with “multiple adults including a strip club dancer,” the US marshal service said.
Two of the other rescued girls were sisters ages 15 and 16 who were found in an apartment in Baton Rouge who “may be victims of adult(s) felony criminal sexual activities,” the US Marshals said.
“During Operation Boo Dat, over one hundred sex offender compliance checks were also attempted or completed in Orleans and Jefferson Parishes,” said the US Marshal Service. “Sex Offender compliance checks require law enforcement officers to go to the sex offender’s reported address of residence to verify that the person still lives at the provided address. Often countless hours of follow-up investigative work are required during and after a compliance check.”
The US Marshals Service said it carried out the operation along with the New Orleans Police Department, Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office, Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, Louisiana State Police, and USMS New Orleans Task Force.