JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - A Pascagoula man will spend the rest of his life behind bars after being found guilty of sexually abusing a young family member in 2010.
A Jackson County jury found Spartacus Alford, 45, guilty on two counts of sexual battery, one count of attempted sexual battery, and one count of touching a child for lustful purposes after just 15 minutes of deliberation.
Judge Kathy Jackson sentenced Alford to the maximum of three life terms plus 15 years on Tuesday.
According to District Attorney Tony Lawrence, Alford was the great-uncle of his victim and sexually assaulted her while he lived with her family in Pascagoula between March and October 2010.
Pascagoula police started investigating the case two years later after the victim told her mother about the abuse.
During the two-day trial, Lawrence said three other family members testified Alford sexually abused them while they were children. Alford lived with each of the three victims during the abuse.
"The defendant abused the trust the family placed in him to be around their children. Four children lost their innocence due to his depraved sexual abuse," said Lawrence. "The life sentence handed down by Judge Jackson certainly tells this defendant, and I hope others, to leave our children alone."
"This defendant has abused children in his family for more than 25 years," said Assistant District Attorney Cherie Wade. "This life sentence will ensure that the defendant will no longer have the opportunity to abuse another child."