Menu Close

Tag: Pastor Danny Pitts

Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Danny Pitts Faces Trial for Sodomy

pastor danny pitts

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.

In 2022, Danny Pitts, pastor of the now-closed GracePoint Church in Decatur, Alabama, was accused of sexual intercourse by “forcible compulsion” with an individual over 12 but under 16. Pitts pleaded not guilty and has a March 2023 trial date.

1819 reports:

A former Alabama pastor pled not guilty to sexually abusing an underage person.

The former pastor of GracePoint Church in Decatur, 59-year-old Danny Duane Pitts, was arrested in November 2021 and charged with two counts of sodomy.

According to the indictment, Pitts is accused of sexual intercourse by “forcible compulsion” with an individual over 12 but under 16.

Pitts was released on bond in September of 2021, with stipulations requiring him to surrender his passport, wear an ankle monitor and not leave the state.

According to a court form signed by Pitts in November 2021, he listed his employer as GracePoint Church.

GracePoint Church deleted its Facebook page and website after the arrest and is listed as permanently closed on the internet.

WAAY-31 adds:

The trial for a Morgan County pastor arrested and charged on two counts of sodomy has been delayed once again to March 6.

Danny Duane Pitts of Hartselle was arrested in November 2021 on charges of first-degree and second-degree sodomy. 

Pitts pleaded not guilty to both charges and later posted a $500,000 bond. As part of the bond, he was ordered to wear an ankle bracelet, hand over his passport and not travel out of state.

The trial was originally set to begin in November 2022, but a judge delayed the case until Monday. 

The judge presiding over the case cited a heavy caseload for why the decision was made to continue the case again. 

Pitts also faces sodomy charges in Tennessee.

In March 2022, The Chatanooga Times Free Press reported:

A former Alabama pastor now free on $50,000 bond is facing several counts of statutory rape and sexual battery in Grundy County, Tennessee, while he awaits trial in Alabama on other child sex allegations.

Charges in Tennessee against Danny Duane Pitts, 59, of Hartselle, Alabama, stem from an investigation launched Jan. 5 with Tennessee Bureau of Investigation agents working jointly with Hartselle police probing allegations related to incidents that happened between August and November 2019, according to TBI spokesperson Susan Niland.

Pitts is charged with aggravated statutory rape, two counts of sexual battery by an authority figure and statutory rape by an authority figure, Niland said in a news release issued Monday. Pitts surrendered Monday at the Grundy County Jail and was freed the same day, according to Grundy County Sheriff Clint Shrum.

Shrum said Tuesday in a telephone interview he knew little of the case since it arose from a TBI investigation with links to Alabama.

Mike Taylor, 12th Judicial District attorney general, said Alabama’s State Bureau of Investigation contacted the TBI on the case since that state’s investigation crossed the state line.

In the Tennessee case, Pitts and a 17-year-old boy traveled from Alabama to Grundy County where the alleged abuse took place in 2019, Taylor said Tuesday. Taylor said the teen is believed to have been a member of the church where Pitts worked as pastor in Morgan County, Alabama.

Pitts faces a November trial in Alabama on two counts of sodomy involving another minor in Morgan County, according to court records in Decatur, Alabama.

“It is a case that occurred several years ago and it involved a member of his church, a young man that he had befriended,” Morgan County District Attorney Scott Anderson said Tuesday in a telephone interview.

“We allege an inappropriate relationship took place that was criminal in nature,” Anderson said. He said he couldn’t share any further details on the Alabama case as it continues to develop.

“I’m sure the Grundy County DA and I will be exchanging notes,” Anderson said.

The investigation in Morgan County was a joint probe involving the Hartselle Police Department, Anderson’s office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and members of the North Alabama Violent Crimes Task Force, according to a Nov. 5 news release from the police department. Pitts was later released on a $500,000 bond.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

Connect with me on social media:

Your comments are welcome and appreciated. All first-time comments are moderated. Please read the commenting rules before commenting.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

Bruce Gerencser