2015 was when Abelseth found out the crime was within Louisiana’s statute of limitations. So, she filed charges against Barnes for the rape.
“He’s threatened me multiple times, saying he has connections in the justice system, so I better be careful, and he can take her away anytime he wants to. I didn’t believe him until it happened.”
“It was never assigned to a detective, and nothing was ever investigated,” Abelseth said.
John Barnes is the owner of Gumbeaux Digital Branding, a web company in Ponchatoula. His firm has a contract with the local police department. His website showed them as a client, but that information was removed after the story was reported.
According to the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff Daniel Edwards, his department “dropped the ball” when it failed to investigate the rape. And the DA and state of Louisiana will now be working on the details of the case.
More allegations emerge
This year, Barnes was given full custody of the now 16-year-old girl, and Abelseth was ordered to pay child support.