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Veteran Pleads Guilty To Faking Suicide To Evade Charges Of Raping His Stepdaughter
Jacob Blair Scott, 45, was found guilty in June of child sex abuse charges for raping and impregnating his then-14-year-old stepdaughter. This week, he pleaded guilty in federal court to counts related to faking his own death to evade accountability.
A U.S. veteran accused of faking his own death to evade a child sex abuse investigation has pleaded guilty to federal charges.
The Mississippi Army Vet and Purple Heart recipient pleaded guilty on Monday to federal charges connected to his faked death, including the deployment of a false distress signal, bringing weapons across state lines and providing false information, according to the Associated Press.
A Jackson County jury in Mississippi found him guilty in connection with the sex abuse charges on June 2.
DNA testing proved that Scott — who is from Moss Point, Mississippi — was the biological father of his underage stepdaughter’s child, leading to a 2017 indictment charging Scott with 14 sex abuse charges.
The victim testified at his trial that Scott sexually assaulted her more than 30 times between 2016 and 2017, according to the Biloxi Sun Herald, forcing her to repeatedly take morning-after pills and wash the sheets to hide any physical evidence of the abuse.
The abuse only stopped when the victim became pregnant and, she said, “he got very mad” when she refused to abort his child. Her older sister took her to report the rapes after she confided that she was pregnant, but her mother didn't know the father was her own husband until the teen gave birth.
He was arrested after the DNA test proved he was the biological father of his stepdaughter's child, and was scheduled to plead guilty in August 2018.
However, on July 30, 2018 — just days before his court appearance — Scott attempted to stage his own suicide, according to the recent federal plea agreement reviewed by Oxygen.com.
“On July 30, 2018, in Orange Beach, Alabama, the Orange Beach Police Department responded to a call for assistance and found a small boat about a mile from the shoreline,” according to court records. “There were no occupants in the boat. A semi-automatic pistol was tied to the boat where a suicide note was found.
The ploy set off a week-long search by the U.S. Coast Guard around the Gulf of Mexico, according to the Associated Press.
But some dubious investigators noted little evidence to support that Scott took his own life — and finding the gun tied to the boat indicated that the suspect wanted the weapon to be found. His 14-year-old victim and her mother also believed Scott was still alive.
In January 2020, he was added to a U.S Marshals Service’s 15 Most Wanted list, prompting a citizen to come forward with a tip. He was arrested later that day at a trailer park in Antlers, Oklahoma, living under the alias Lucas Marty Walding.
At the time, the U.S. Marshals said it was their fastest apprehension since they launched the Top 15 program 37 years earlier.
During the sex abuse trial earlier this year, Scott attempted to blame his mental health and his failing relationship with his victim's mother for his abuse of girl, according to the Sun Herald.
“He wants everybody to think this 14-year-old child is this aggressive seductress that is pursuing him,” said Jackson County District Attorney Angel Myers McIlrath."
The jury ultimately found him guilty of nine counts of sexual battery, four counts of touching a child for a lustful purpose and one count of child exploitation.
He was sentenced to 85 years for the sex crimes.
“I was a good man,” Scott said at his sentencing. “This ain’t who I am.”
As for the federal charges, the three criminal counts carry a five-year penalty and a $250,000 fine each.
A federal judge will sentence him in November.