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Girl's Abductor was Molestation Victim

April 05, 2002

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Girl's Abductor was Molestation Victim

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EUNICE, La., - The man who police say confessed to sexually assaulting and killing 12-year-old Holli Thibodeaux was himself a victim of molestation, said his grandparents and Evangeline Parish District Attorney Brent Coreil on Thursday.

Coreil said a man was convicted in 1992 of molesting Jimmy D. Mosbroker Jr., Eunice, while Mosbroker was in his early teens. Authorities say Mosbroker, 25, called them Tuesday night and said he killed Holli Thibodeaux. Later Tuesday night, Mosbroker later shot himself to death in the parking lot of a Eunice lounge.

Coreil said the man, whose name could not be confirmed, was convicted of molesting Mosbroker repeatedly. The man was sentenced to eight years in prison.

Coreil said the man also faced a pornography charge in the case, but he was unsure if the pornography involved Mosbroker.

Mosbroker's grandparents, Franklin and Virginia Cavalier, Houma, were in Eunice on Thursday for the wake and funeral of Mosbroker at 2 p.m. today. They said a man who took children on field trips for a church in Basile molested their grandson.

"He was molested by a man taking him to church," Cavalier said. "I didn't know people could do things to kids that could affect them. ... All I know is they said a man over there had something to do with that."

Valanne MacGyvers, assistant professor of psychology at UL Lafayette, said, "That probably explains why it escalated to murder, because he had so much pent-up anger and resentment that wasn't properly processed."

Most people who molest children were themselves molested, MacGyvers said. But the majority of children who were molested do not molest others, she said.

"It's a horrible, horrible pattern," MacGyvers said.

Also in the Holli Thibodeaux case, investigators said Thursday that a composite sketch of the girl's abductor was a fairly accurate depiction of Mosbroker, investigators said.

Thibodeaux was playing with a friend March 28 near her Hathaway home when a man in a pickup truck grabbed her and drove off. Her body was found the next day. Her 8-year-old friend provided police with a description of the man and the truck.

The sketch showed a clean-shaven man with dirty-blond hair. A March 9 photograph of Mosbroker showed him with dark hair and a mustache.

"I don't think the description was off that much," Jefferson Davis Parish Sheriff Ricky Edwards said Thursday. "I think the hero in all this was her (the friend). She didn't get picked up by him, and she was able to give us a great description."

Edwards said he deputized the child Wednesday.

A lack of solid information may have allowed Mosbroker to walk away from a traffic stop Tuesday morning. Mosbroker was stopped Tuesday morning on Interstate 10 near Breaux Bridge as he drove east toward Mississippi, said Paul Vankerkhove, spokesman for State Police Troop I. Mosbroker was pulled over because his truck resembled the description provided by Thibodeaux's friend, he said.

The trooper took information from Mosbroker, along with photos of him and his truck, which were e-mailed to the police command center in Jeff Davis Parish, Vankerkhove said. Mosbroker was allowed to leave.

"Without any probable cause, we can't just bring somebody in," he said. "We gather information and we investigate. Eventually, he would have been questioned."

If troopers had a partial license plate number or something more substantial they could have brought Mosbroker in Tuesday, Vankerkhove said.

Edwards said Thursday he is sure Mosbroker committed the crime.

In his call to police Tuesday night, Mosbroker confessed to shooting Thibodeaux with a 9 mm gun, Edwards said. The gun has not been found, but Edwards said Mosbroker owned a 9 mm gun.

He also confessed to raping Thibodeaux and shooting her in the back of the head, details that were not released by police, Edwards said.

Investigators will not close the case until forensic tests confirm that Mosbroker was the culprit, Edwards said. The results could be available next week, he said.

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