Former Cape Girardeau Co. 'Santa' sentenced to prison for sex cr - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Former Cape Girardeau Co. 'Santa' sentenced to prison for sex crime

Jeffrey Moffat (Source: Cape Girardeau Co. Sheriff's Office) Jeffrey Moffat (Source: Cape Girardeau Co. Sheriff's Office)
NEW MADRID COUNTY, MO (KFVS) -

A man who once portrayed Santa Claus in Cape Girardeau County will spend the next 12 years in prison.

According to a press release from Cape Girardeau County Prosecuting Attorney Chris Limbaugh, Jeffrey Moffat, 57, pleaded guilty to the unclassified felony of statutory sodomy in the first degree in a New Madrid County courtroom on Monday, August 22.

Moffat's case was moved to New Madrid County on a change of venue request.

He entered that plea on a charge of statutory sodomy where the victim was younger than 14.

Prosecutors alleged that between Aug. 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015, Moffat sexually abused a 6-year-old girl while her parents were away.

During the plea hearing, Moffat acknowledged that the evidence against him was strong enough for a jury to find him guilty of the charge beyond a reasonable doubt.

Moffat was well-known in the Jackson community for playing the role of Santa Claus on the Iron Mountain Railway - Polar Express for nearly two decades.

Court documents show he touched a 6-year-old girl inappropriately on more than one occasion.

Under Missouri law, Moffat must serve at least 85 percent of the 12-year sentence before he can be considered for parole.

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