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Man who abducted 14-year-old girls at gunpoint gets 25-year sentence
SPRINGFIELD - A man whose kidnapping attempt was foiled when one of his teenage victims grabbed the steering wheel of his SUV and forced the vehicle off-road has been sentenced to 25 years in prison.
Court officials announced Thursday that Albert Lavigne Jr., 40, pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree kidnapping in the October 2020 abduction.
The victims, both 14 years old at the time, told investigators they were walking along McCaroll Road in Springfield when Lavigne pulled up alongside them. Lavigne reportedly pulled out a gun and forced the girls inside his SUV.
While Lavigne was driving the victims down LA 22 in Livingston Parish, one of the girls grabbed the steering wheel and forced the SUV to crash into a drainage ditch. After the wreck, both girls jumped out and ran to a nearby business for help.
WBRZ spoke to one victim and her parents after the horrific encounter.
"I did fight for the wheel for a while and jerked it, and finally won," one victim said at the time. "When we crashed, me and my friend walked out, running and yelling for help. And then these two guys tackled the kidnapper."
All three were taken to a hospital, where Lavigne told a different story about what happened, but investigators found a handgun inside the vehicle, corroborating the teens' account.
As part of his sentence, Lavigne must also register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.
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