Black Collar Crime: Protestant Navy Chaplain Loften Thornton Videotaped Having Sex Outside of Bar

loften thornton

The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.

Loften Thornton, a Protestant Navy chaplain, was recently videotaped having consensual sex with a woman outside of a New Orleans bar.

Ramon Vargas, a reporter for The New Orleans Advocate, writes:

New Orleans may have a libertine reputation, but what happened last month just outside the Crown & Anchor bar in Algiers Point was too much for owner Neil Timms.

Right in plain view of his surveillance camera, he said, a Navy chaplain, Capt. Loften Thornton, and his female companion were having sex.

“It was the fact that it was a chaplain and it was in public” that upset him, Timms said.

So he handed over video of the tryst to authorities at the nearby Marine Forces Reserve base in Algiers. The chaplain was fired a few days later, officials said.

According to Timms, he’d met Thornton a couple of times before at the British-themed Crown & Anchor and understood he was a chaplain at the Marine Forces Reserve base about a mile away in Federal City.

Timms said people at the bar noticed Thornton and a woman slip outside of the bar on Pelican Avenue together on March 15. Somebody in the bar walked around the corner, saw Thornton and the woman having sex, and asked them to stop, which they did, Timms said.

Timms said he reviewed his security video, realized the act had been recorded and notified the Federal City base. He said he believed the encounter was consensual but was still alarmed that it involved a military chaplain.

In a statement Wednesday, the Corps said that Lt. Gen. Rex McMillian, the Marine Forces Reserve commander, fired Thornton on March 20 “due to a loss of trust and confidence.” The statement did not specify what triggered the dismissal, citing an ongoing investigation.

A report Wednesday in USA Today, however, cited two anonymous Department of Defense sources who said authorities “were examining” footage showing Thornton having sex with a woman outside the Crown & Anchor, which is popular with members of the military in New Orleans, especially on the west bank.

Attempts to contact Thornton on Wednesday were unsuccessful.

Thornton became a Navy chaplain in 1992, according to USA Today. Officials said he is a Protestant chaplain.



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  1. Ell Ess

    Wow. He must have “forgot” his scripture from Proverbs:

    “21 The Lord sees everything you do. Wherever you go, he is watching. 22 The sins of the wicked are a trap. They get caught in the net of their own sin. 23 They die because they have no self-control. Their utter stupidity will send them to their graves.

    No problem, though. All he has to do is say, “I’m sorry” and all is made right. Gotta love that Christian religion!

  2. That Other Jean

    People do tend to forget about surveillance cameras. They’re somewhere near pretty much every commercial establishment in tourist areas, and the odds are that they’re recording. Chaplain Thornton killed his career for sex outside a bar?


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