Former North Haven coach gets jail time, banished from island for sexually abusing teen

Posted Jan. 08, 2014, at 6:45 p.m.
Ryan Lantagne
Ryan Lantagne

NORTH HAVEN, Maine — The former North Haven boys basketball coach who admitted to sexually abusing a teenage girl was sentenced Wednesday to 15 months in jail and ordered to stay off the island for the following four years.

Ryan Lantagne, 27, of North Haven, was sentenced in Knox County Superior Court in Rockland on three counts of sexual abuse of a minor and a felony count of violating a condition of bail.

Justice Jeffrey Hjelm sentenced Lantagne to five years with all but 15 months suspended, an agreement reached between the district attorney’s office and defense lawyer. In addition, Lantagne will be on probation for four years after his release from jail.

During those four years, he is prohibited from returning to North Haven, where the victim lives. District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau said the prosecution had recommended the prohibition and the judge agreed to the probation condition.

Lantagne had pleaded guilty in September to two counts of sexual abuse of a minor, who was 14 when the crimes occurred in 2012. But while he was out awaiting sentencing, he was arrested again in October on another count of the same charge with the same victim. Originally, he would have served no more than six months behind bars under the initial offenses.

He first was arrested in March 2013 after the grandmother of the victim reported to police that she found a journal in which the girl discussed her relationship with Lantagne.

More recently, according to an affidavit filed Monday in Rockland District Court by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, the police were called when the grandmother of the victim said she believed the girl and Lantagne were seeing each other again.

The girl, now 15 years old, was questioned and acknowledged that Lantagne assaulted her at his residence after she went there on her own in October. At the request of police, she showed them photographs on her computer of the two of them hugging and kissing.

Lantagne resigned as basketball coach before the team’s tournament appearance in early 2012.

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