Former Alaska State Trooper Convicted of Attempted Child Abuse

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) – Former Alaska State Trooper (AST) Vance Peronto was convicted on Friday, March 24, of one count of attempted second-degree molestation of a minor.

On April 26, 2018, investigators learned that Peronto may have had inappropriate contact with a minor, according to a Department of Justice press release.

The timeline of events culminates in the fact that on April 8, 2018, Peronto stopped a 16-year-old girl for driving without headlights. The girl was not issued a citation. Peronto later contacted the 16-year-old through social media and began to rekindle a relationship.

AST investigators working with the girl and her family found electronic evidence related to the case. On April 29, 2018, Peronto attempted to meet a 16-year-old girl at a hotel in Anchorage. Instead, Peronto was picked up by AST and the Anchorage Police Department.

Evidence presented at trial, as the press release states, “convinced that Peronto took a serious step toward sexually engaging a minor while occupying a position of authority over a minor.”

“Alaska State Troopers cannot allow anyone, especially a law enforcement officer, to abuse their power and violate the public trust like Vance Peronto. The prosecution of this former state trooper sends a clear message that no one is above the law, and we will never We will not tolerate any type of criminal activity in our ranks,” said James Cockrell, Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Public Safety.

The trial lasted a little over two weeks, and the jury deliberated for about two and a half days before returning a guilty verdict.

Peronto faces two to 12 years in prison. His mandatory minimum sentence is four years with two years suspended, followed by five years probation.

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