LACLEDE COUNTY, Mo. – A Lebanon man has been sentenced for two counts of statutory sodomy with a person less than twelve years old.

Cody Lee Staggs was sentenced to 20 years in prison for each of the counts after pleading guilty on November 7.

Staggs was arrested in August of 2021 after Laclede County authorities received a call from the Children’s Division alleging Staggs had sexually abused a ten-year-old girl. According to court documents, Staggs told the victim that he would “hurt her very badly” if she ever told anyone. He also said that if she didn’t tell anyone, he would give her money. The victim also said he threatened suicide.

The probable cause statement said that the victim told authorities that Staggs videotaped the abuse and forced the victim to watch the video with him afterward. The victim also showed bruises on her legs to authorities after she described how Staggs had abused her forcefully after she tried kicking him away.

A count of statutory rape was dismissed by the court.