Former Rochester policeman pleads guilty to witness tampering, charges of child sex abuse to be dismissed
(ABC 6 News) – A former Rochester police officer accused of sexually abusing a minor, then trying to keep the juvenile witness from speaking about the crime pleaded guilty to one count of witness tampering in Olmsted County Court last week.
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Joshua David Laber, 45, was charged with 2nd-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor in March of 2020, as well as possession of child pornography.
According to court records, Olmsted County Social Services reported that the child located a camera in a bathroom, and had also disclosed multiple incidents of “grooming behavior” and sexual abuse by Laber.
The child pornography charge was dismissed in September of 2021.
Laber was later charged with two counts of witness tampering between March and April of 2021, after allegedly using Pinterest accounts with false names to message the victim and tell them to change their testimony to law enforcement, then threaten suicide if they did not.
He also allegedly mislead the witness, saying they did not have to appear in court.
According to a plea deal filed April 18, Laber pleaded guilty to the charge of witness tampering in exchange for zero to three years of probation, no additional jail time, and the complete dismissal of the criminal sexual conduct charge during his sentencing, scheduled for Aug. 14.