A man was sentenced today in Los Angeles to 40 months in federal prison for his 12-year campaign of harassment — via letters and phone calls — against actress Eva LaRue and her daughter in which he threatened them with torture, rape and death.
James David Rogers, 58, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge John A. Kronstadt, who called the man’s conduct “inexcusable.”
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Rogers pleaded guilty in April to two counts of mailing threatening communications, one count of threats by interstate communications and two counts of stalking.
According to court documents, from March 2007 until his arrest in November 2019, Rogers stalked, threatened, and harassed Eva LaRue, an actress whose credits include The Young & the Restless — for which she won a daytime Emmy in 2020 — CSI: Miami, Santa Barbara and All My Children, and her daughter — who was 5 years old when the campaign of terror began.
For example, in February 2008, Rogers sent LaRue a letter in which he vowed to “stalk you until the day you die.” In other letters, Rogers repeatedly threatened to rape LaRue and her daughter.
From March 2007 to June 2015, Rogers mailed about 37 handwritten and typed letters in which he threatened to rape, kill, and otherwise injure LaRue and her daughter. In June 2015, Rogers sent a letter to LaRue’s daughter which stated, in part, “I am the man who has been stalking for the last 7 years. Now I have my eye on you too.”
Rogers signed each letter using the name “Freddie Krueger.”
In October and November 2019, Rogers called the school LaRue’s daughter attended, spoke with a school employee, claimed to be her father and asked if she was present. In November 2019, he again called the girl’s school and left a voicemail in which he identified himself as “Freddie Krueger” and threatened to “rape her, molest her and kill her.”
Rogers’ federal public defense attorney, Waseem Salahi, told the court that his client suffers from “psychiatric instability,” and that “People do irrational things when they’re mentally ill.”
Salahi, who proposed a non-custodial sentence of home confinement and court-mandated mental health treatment, said Rogers deals with mental disorders including “repressed gender dysphoria” and faces “a long road of recovery.”
According to his attorney, Rogers is “actually a very sweet, gentle person — but he’s also mentally ill, and that makes him into someone else sometimes.”
LaRue gave a tearful victim impact statement, telling the judge in L.A. federal court that she has undergone therapy since the harassment began in order to deal with feelings of fear and paranoia.
She said that although she and her daughter had no direct contact with the Ohio resident, “We didn’t know if he would show up on our doorstep. We will think about him for a lifetime. The fear is with me forever.”
Appearing via Zoom, Rogers apologized to LaRue “for what I said to you for the past 12 years, and putting your family through this hellish nightmare. I hope someday I can earn your forgiveness for my misdeeds. I wish someone had intervened much sooner and I was caught much sooner.”
The judge ordered Rogers to self surrender Oct. 12 to begin his sentence at a federal prison in Ohio.
City News Service contributed to this report.
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