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UPDATED: Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Brian Pounds Sentenced to Forty-Five Years in Prison for Sexual Assault

pastor brian pounds

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.

Earlier this year, Brian Pounds, pastor of Vernon First Assembly of God in Vernon, Texas, was charged with raping a 15-year-old girl. Pounds is a graduate of Liberty University.

After his original arrest, Pounds was accused of sexually assaulting another teenager.

In July 2021, Times Record News reported:

A Vernon pastor suspected of raping a 15-year-old girl in a church and a motel, choking her and giving her drugs was indicted Wednesday. 

A Wilbarger County grand jury handed down a five-count indictment against Brian Keith Pounds, 45, on Wednesday.

Pounds was indicted on one count of aggravated sexual assault of a child, two counts of sexual assault of a child, one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and one count of delivery of methamphetamine to a minor, according to the indictment.  

The offenses are alleged to have happened July 1, according to the indictment. 

Pounds, 45, was being held Friday in Wilbarger County Jail, according to online jail records. 

His bond amounts were not available Friday evening. 

Pounds was held by the Wichita County Jail from July 16 until Friday on total bonds of $300,000 for charges of sexual assault and delivery of drugs to a minor, according to online jail records.

….

“Mr. Pounds has been a pastor in the Vernon community for over a decade,” 46th Judicial District Attorney Staley Heatly said in a media release.

….

Pounds lists himself as lead pastor at Vernon First Assembly of God on his LinkedIn social media account.

He has held that position for nine years and 10 months, according to his LinkedIn account, where his function has been to “Inspire, motivate, and educate people in life’s journey, helping them to debelop [sic] the soul: body, mind, and spirit.”

An affidavit detailed in a previous Times Record News story gave this account

A 15-year-old girl’s mother contacted Vernon police to report her daughter had sexual intercourse with a man later identified as Pounds. 

She told police she was trying to find her daughter when she made contact with Pounds at a motel.

He told her he was a pastor at First Assembly of God and was trying to get a room for someone in need. He rented a room at the motel in the name of the church. 

Officers did not know at the time that Pounds had been in the room with the woman’s daughter. 

Later that day, the woman found her daughter at a Walmart and brought her to the Vernon Police Department.

The girl told police she had been having sex with Pounds and had smoked meth at the motel. 

She told police they had been having sex for about a month, and Pounds had been counseling her and her family through the church.

Pounds denied to police any sexual contact with the girl. He told police he had been helping her and her family as a minister.

Pounds gave the police permission to search the motel room. They found evidence of meth, fibers and hair, leading officers to believe the girl had been there. 

….

She said he began to groom her by getting her a job cleaning houses. She said she would meet Pounds at the church, and he would give her meth. 

She described the meetings at the church as counseling where Pounds offered her meth. She said their first sexual encounter was at the church.

The girl said she told her mother the day she and Pounds got caught. The teenager said Pounds picked her up, gave her meth and had sex with her.

Also, she said Pounds put his hands around her neck and choked her.

In August 2021, the Vernon Record reported:

A new victim has come forward, accusing former Vernon First Assembly of God Pastor Brian Pounds of illegal sexual behavior with a child. The allegations were unsealed Friday and a new charge of sexual assault of a child was added to Pounds, who is currently being held in the Wilbarger County Jail under six Grand Jury indictments.

Jimmy Dennis, secretary of the Vernon Assembly of God board of trustees, said the new allegations saddened the church and were deeply troubling. He said the church was cooperating with authorities in the investigation. Dennis presented the following statement to the newspaper from the church: “As the congregation of Vernon First Assembly, we were deeply saddened and troubled by the news concerning our former pastor Brian Pounds. His tenure as pastor ended with a letter of resignation that was submitted by him and read to the congregation on Sunday, July 18. We are cooperating fully with local authorities as they investigate this situation. We understand how hurtful and heart-wrenching these allegations are and our hearts, our prayers, and our sincere apologies go out to the family and those in our community who, along with us, have been affected by these tragic events.”

Pounds was charged with a new count of sexual assault of a child on Friday. The new allegation refers to an incident that occurred sometime around Oct. 1, 2013 according to a probable cause affidavit from the Texas Rangers, and it was uncovered as part of the investigation into the initial accusation.

Pounds was aware, on July 1, that he was under investigation from accusations made by a 15-year-old girl. As the week progressed and a case was built, Pounds became suicidal. On July 5, 2021 the affidavit states Vernon police responded to Pounds residence because it was “reported he was threatening suicide.” Police removed a 38-caliber revolver handgun from the residence, and also located 38 caliber ammo at the church in Pound’s desk. Pounds reportedly checked into Red River Hospital in Wichita Falls.

The affidavit states that on July 14, investigators conducted an interview with Pounds’ wife Amy, at her residence in Vernon: “Amy was asked about any knowledge of inappropriate activities by Brian, including any extramarital affairs, inappropriate relationships, or methamphetamine use. Amy denied any knowledge of indiscretions, affairs, or methamphetamine use by Brian.”

Pounds was arrested on July 16 at the Wichita Falls hospital and booked into the Wichita County Jail.

While he was incarcerated, investigators reviewed phone calls Pounds made: “During these calls, Brian and Amy began discussing additional potential charges that could be filed against him. Brian identified (the new victim) to Amy by her first name, Brian inferred that if the additional charges are related to (the new victim) it would be bad. Amy told Brian, “I know.” Brian became extremely emotional saying, “I’m a dead man.’ Brian told Amy his involvement with (the new victim) was a long time ago and that “it has never mattered how sorry [he] was.”

During a follow-up interview: “Amy was confronted with the information obtained from the recorded jail calls between her and Brian. Amy confirmed she was dishonest during her initial interview regarding Brian’s involvement with other females and his methamphetamine use. Amy confirmed she knew of Brian being involved in exchanging inappropriate text messages with (the new victim) in the past though she denied any knowledge of a sexual relationship between the two.”

Investigators determined the identity of the new victim and interviewed her, they said she became extremely distraught, and agreed to give details of the alleged assaults.

She said about seven years ago, at age 15, she was sexually assaulted at the church and the assaults continued for about two years at both the church and Pound’s home. She said the first incident began when she participated in a youth group activity at the First Assembly of God church as they were playing a game called “Murder in the dark.”

She said Pounds would turn off the lights and the kids would hide in places around the church. She said when Pounds found her, he groped her. In another instance Pounds invited her to the church for a youth group activity, but she found only Pounds there. She said he told her to go wait in his office, until everyone else arrived. Instead he came in and locked the door. She alleged he made her disrobe and forced her to perform sex acts. On another occasion in the church office, she said Pounds put a revolver to her head and told her if she ever told anyone of the incidents he would kill her and himself.

In December 2021, Pounds pleaded guilty to aggravated sexual assault of a child and was sentenced to 45 years in prison.

Ministry Watch reports:

A former pastor in Vernon, Texas, has been sentenced to 45 years in prison after he pleaded guilty last week to aggravated sexual assault of a child.

rian Keith Pounds was arrested in July and accused of raping a 15-year-old girl when he was minister at First Assembly of God Church and a chaplain at Tyson Foods.  

An affidavit filed in the case said he groomed the girl by getting her a job cleaning houses for elderly people, then began to have sex with her at the church and in a motel room, giving her methamphetamines and, in at least one instance, choking her. 

He also had been counseling the girl’s family through the church. 

Pounds was charged with three additional counts of sexual assault of a child after he revealed the existence of another victim during a phone call to his wife in August from the Wichita County Jail, where he was being held on $200,000 bail.

Pounds was sentenced in the 46th District Court of Wilbarger County. According to the Wichita Falls Times Record News, Staley Heatly, 46th District Attorney, said that under Texas law Pounds will be required to serve at least half of his sentence, and that sex offenders generally serve more than that. 

“Brian Pounds abused his position of trust as a pastor in the most horrific way,” Heatly said. “Our community and our children are much safer with him in the custody of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.”

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

Christians Say the Darnedest Things: “Dr.” David Tee Says Rape and Sexual Abuse Are Mistakes and Errors in Judgment

dr david tee

We are writing this as BG continues [and I shall continue to do so as long as clerics commit crimes] his Black collar series. He likes [Actually, I don’t like it. Doing so is a necessary burden, one which often makes me feel like I have been wading in a septic tank.] to point out the ‘sins’ of Christians even though he declares there is no such thing as sin. [Yes, and that’s why the series is about “crimes,” not “sins.” Tee knows this because I have explained it to him several times, yet he continues to lie about and misrepresent my views — which, of course, he will deny doing so.]

But, pointing out other people’s mistakes, errors in judgment, and other problems [crimes, David, crimes] doesn’t help anyone [actually it validates the experiences of victims and lets them know others care about what they have gone through]. It only makes the person doing look bad, hate-filled, and antagonistic.

It doesn’t help their reputation either and only inflames the problems between believer and unbeliever. [No, Tee is the only one with enflamed hemorrhoids over the Black Collar Crime Series. Most people appreciate me calling attention to crimes committed by so-called men of God.] We suggest that atheists and BG start removing the beams from their eyes. [ David, by all means, start a blog that reports on criminal behavior by atheists. Show me the “beams.” I have never raped or sexually assaulted anyone. I have never sexually molested children. Have I ever committed a crime? Sure. Who hasn’t — in the strictest sense of the word. I’ve committed a few misdemeanors over the years, but no felonies.] maybe then they would see Christians in a better light. [We see Christianity as it is. And trust me, David, when you are in the picture, all we see is violence and ugliness. Defending rapists, perverts, and child molesters! Dude, you need to get saved!]

They may not want to as they may find out the truth that they are wrong and that may scare them to an early grave. [sigh]

….

Finally, make sure to obey Jesus and get the beams out of your eyes so you do not end up like BG, atheists, and bad Christians [like David Tee]. You need to see clearly [believe as David Tee does] before you can help others do the same [defend rapists, perverts, and child molesters].

— “Dr. David Tee (David Thiessen, TheologyArcheology/TEWSNBM), Theologyarcheology: A Site for the Glory of God, Misc. Topics, December 20, 2021

I have previously addressed Tee’s defense of criminal behavior in a post titled David Tee Defends Christian Rapists and Sexual Predators.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

Black Collar Crime: Baptist Pastor Robert Woodrum Accused of Raping Two Minors

pastor robert woodrum

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.

Robert Woodrum, former pastor of Oakfield Baptist Church (affiliated with the American Baptist Convention) in Corning, Ohio stands accused of raping two minor girls (one of whom is related to him).

The Perry County Tribune reports:

When the former pastor of a Perry County church was sued by his adult granddaughter for allegedly sexually assaulting her when she was a child, he flatly denied the charge and suggested the lawsuit was just part of an attempt to extort money from him.

Earlier this month, however, a Perry County grand jury issued an indictment against 71-year-old Robert A. Woodrum, charging him with 24 counts of first-degree felony rape involving two underage victims.

The indictment, filed Nov. 24 in Perry County Common Pleas Court, indicates that the two victims were both under the age of 13 when the alleged crimes occurred. The victims are designated in the indictment only by initials, ALK and MRF.

There are 12 charges relating to each of the two victims, and in each case the rapes are alleged to have taken place during the summer months – in June, July and August of 2002 through 2005 for ALK, and June, July and August of 2003 through 2006 for MRF.

The indictment indicates that ALK was under 10 years old throughout the period of the alleged sex assaults in that case, and that MRF was under 10 during the alleged assaults that took place prior to 2004.

In July a woman identifying herself as Woodrum’s granddaughter, but using the pseudonym “Jane Doe,” filed a lawsuit against him in Perry County Common Pleas Court. The complaint said that the plaintiff was now a Marion County resident under 30 years old. It alleged that Woodrum had engaged in sexual conduct with her from the time she was 9 until she turned 13.

The woman claimed that while she was growing up, “particularly in the summers,” she would “regularly spend the night with her maternal grandparents.” She alleged that during these visits, her grandfather engaged in sexual conduct with her, in the form of inappropriate touching, “dozens of times.” The type of activity she describes in the suit would qualify as rape under Ohio law because of the age of the alleged victim.

At the time the lawsuit was filed, the plaintiff’s attorneys indicated that the woman had also filed a complaint with the Perry County Sheriff’s Office about the alleged sexual assaults. At that time The Perry County Tribune contacted Perry County Prosecutor Joseph A. Flautt, who confirmed that his office been informed of the woman’s complaint, and was investigating

Woodrum, a former pastor of Oakfield Baptist Church, reportedly lived in Crooksville until June 2021, when he moved to Zanesville. In late July he answered the lawsuit and countersued the plaintiff for defamation.

In his answer and countersuit Woodrum denied “that he has ever engaged in sexual conduct with any person under the age of 13.” He accused his granddaughter of filing a frivolous lawsuit “brought merely to harass (him) and extort money.” He claimed that before the suit was filed, the law firm representing the woman had sent him successive letters, each “requesting a large confidential settlement under threat of litigation.”

Woodrum also asked the court to either dismiss the woman’s complaint, or require her to proceed under her real name. “Plaintiff should not be permitted to proceed in this action under a pseudonym,” his attorneys argued in a motion. “Permitting plaintiff to proceed anonymously in this action while forcing defendant to face the onslaught of public humiliation and scorn is unjust and inequitable.”

In October, however, Common Pleas Judge Tina M. Boyer ruled in the woman’s favor, saying that she will not dismiss her suit, and will allow her to continue to be identified in court records as Jane Doe.

Following Woodrum’s indictment, a nationwide warrant was issued for his arrest.

I pastored near Oakfield Baptist Church from 1983-1994.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

UPDATED: Black Collar Crime: IFB Pastor David Rowan Accused of Raping Teen Girls Commits Suicide

pastor david rowan

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.

2018

David Rowan, pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Milton, Florida, stands accused of raping two teen girls.

ABC-2 reports:

A high-profile church pastor was charged with sexually assaulting two young sisters while he was in Murfreesboro, Tennessee for a religious conference.

Florida pastor David Rowan was arrested there Tuesday. He’s was indicted on rape, unlawful sexual contact and sexual battery by an authority figure.

The arrest stemmed from an alleged incident here in Middle Tennessee back in 2014. Rowan was a guest speaker at a religious convention in Murfreesboro.

Sex crimes detectives said he convinced the parents of two girls to let him take them to lunch. The family was seeking spiritual guidance from Rowan and trusted him.

Police said he brought the 14 and 15-year-old sisters to a local hotel where he took advantage of the situation and molested them.

Rowan is a well-known pastor in Milton, Florida, not far from Pensacola.

Rowan’s church bio page states:

The atmosphere in my childhood home was semi religious, leading to my philosophy by the time of my Navy enlistment in 1973 that all paths led to God—though because of my sins, I felt I could not go to heaven

My high school sweetheart and I were married in 1975, and by 1980 deteriorating circumstances in our home motivated us to take our two baby daughters and begin attending church.

Following Bible principles, our marriage improved, and I became a better man. My pastor told me that in light of these changes, coupled with the fact that I had gone forward in a church service as a nine year old boy, I must be saved. Further Bible study and application of the truths I learned brought me so much enjoyment that I began sharing these things with others.

Finally, in the fall of 1981, I enrolled in Tennessee Temple University to pursue pastoral studies and learned more wonderful truths, the two most notable of those being who Jesus really is and His wonderful gift of salvation. (Neither as a nine year old boy nor as a 25 year old man had I known these truths, but I concluded that God knew I would learn them later in life, so He went ahead and saved me when I was nine.)

After finishing my studies at Tennessee Temple University in 1985, I began my first pastorate, still clinging to that “nine-year-old” profession (whatever that was).

(During this time, two Bible passages kept bothering me: Matthew 7:21-23 in which the Lord disclaims certain individuals performing works in His name, and Ephesians 1:13, “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,” “What did I believe when I said I believed?” was the recurring question haunting my mind.)

Through the Scriptures, God revealed to me that I was a lost sinner. He then used them further to give me additional knowledge I desperately needed and opened my understanding to the point that I rested in the finished work of Christ for mankind’s redemption.

After 10 years of church and ministry, I was truly “born again” and have never doubted or questioned the sufficiency of the suffering of Christ Jesus on my behalf.

Like Apollos in Acts 18, my “calling” is to keep preaching that Jesus is the Christ who died and paid for the sins of the whole world.

2021

Rowan’s case eventually went to trial. While awaiting the jury’s verdict, Rowan drove to a parking garage in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and killed himself.

ABC-3 reports:

A Milton pastor who was on trial this week for multiple sex crimes against two teenage girls was found dead in a parking garage Thursday in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, according to the Murfreesboro Police Department.

David Rowan, 66, appeared to have died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the preliminary investigation.

Murfreesboro PD responded to the Rutherford County Justice Center Parking Garage on 223 Maple Street at around 11:43 a.m. where they found Rowan dead from a single gunshot wound.

Rowan was awaiting a jury’s verdict regarding his charges for multiple sex crimes involving two teenage girls in 2014.

Rowan was arrested by Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 16, 2018.

A report from the MPD in 2017 states that two teenage sisters were victimized in 2014. They said Rowan was the suspect involved.

Rowan was booked into Santa Rosa County Jail on Feb 16, 2018 and was held on no bond. (why was he out of jail?)

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Jacob Malone Pleads Guilty to Making Terroristic Threats

jacob malone

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.

Other posts about Jacob Malone: Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Jacob Malone Plans to Admit He Raped Church Teenager, Black Collar Crime: Judge Rejects Calvary Fellowship Pastor Jacob Malone’s Plea Agreement and Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Jacob Malone Sentenced to 3-6 Years in Prison for Sexual Assault

From 2017:

According to the Daily Local News, Jacob Malone, former pastor at Calvary Fellowship in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, plans to “enter a guilty plea to criminal charges brought in the case of a teenager he allegedly raped and impregnated. The Local News article states:

The former pastor at a Uwchlan megachurch intends to enter a guilty plea to criminal charges brought in the case of a teenager he allegedly raped and impregnated, a prosecutor said Wednesday.

Assistant District Attorney Emily Provencher of the DA’s Child Abuse Unit told Common Pleas President Judge Jacqueline Carroll Cody in court that Jacob Matthew “Jake” Malone had made it clear through his attorney that he would plead guilty and be sentenced.

….

Malone, 34, of Exton, is charged with rape, sexual assault, institutional sexual assault, corruption of minors, and endangering the welfare of children. He has been held on bail in Chester County Prison since his arrest in January 2016 after returning to the United States from Ecuador.

According to police, the victim reported that she had met Malone at a church in Mesa, Arizona, when she was approximately 12 years old. Malone was a pastor at the church that the victim attended. Several years later, in June of 2014, Malone contacted the then 17-year-old victim and invited her to stay with him and his family in Minnesota, where he had become a pastor at a local church.

While in Minnesota, police said, the victim alleged that Malone began trying to have inappropriate contact with her. In July 2014, Malone moved his family to Chester County, where he was starting a new position as a pastor at Calvary Fellowship, a non-denominational church off Route 100. Malone again invited the victim to live with him and his family, and he even registered the victim in a local high school.

The victim, according to police, reported that Malone began sexually assaulting her in the fall of 2014 while she was living at his residence in the unit block of Atherton Drive in Exton and attending Calvary. She was 18 at the time.

The victim reported that Malone provided alcohol to her on two occasions, and that during one of those incidents, the victim alleged that she became highly intoxicated and was molested by Malone.

Amazingly, Malone views his future criminal prosecution and incarceration as an “opportunity” to serve God. Please listen to the following video of Malone’s plea for prayer and understanding in light of the fact that this loving father and man of God got a female church member drunk and had sex with her.

Video Link

You can find more information about this case here.

The New York Daily News reports:

 A suburban Philadelphia pastor accused of sexually assaulting and impregnating a teenager has pleaded guilty and been sentenced to three to six years in prison after a judge rejected an earlier plea agreement as too lenient.

Thirty-five-year-old Jacob Malone, of Exton, was sentenced Friday after entering guilty pleas to institutional sex assault, corruption of minors and child endangerment. He also must register as a sex offender for 15 years.

Malone and prosecutors had reached an earlier plea deal that called for a two-year minimum jail term, but Judge Jacqueline Cody rejected that deal a month ago.

Malone was working at Calvary Fellowship, a nondenominational church in Downingtown, when authorities say he began sexually assaulting the girl in the fall of 2014, when she was in her late teens. She gave birth a year ago to their daughter. She maintained he took advantage of her “mentally, physically, spiritually.”

In court, Malone admitted he gave the girl alcohol but said the sexual encounters were consensual. He apologized, saying his “failures and weaknesses” had hurt her, her family and his family.

“She admired me and trusted me, and I betrayed that,” he said.

Cody called the case “one of the times when the court system fails” and said even with the stiffer sentence in the new plea agreement Malone would be “serving a sentence much lighter than the crime deserves.”

The original charges against Malone included rape. His defense attorney Evan Kelly said in a statement that Malone “has always been adamant” he did not rape the teenager but has admitted to other crimes. “And for that he is embarrassed, ashamed and truly remorseful,” Kelly said.

November 2, 2021

While incarcerated on the aforementioned charges, Malone tried to arrange the murder-for-hire of a judge and key witness in the case against him. Today, Malone pleaded guilty to making terroristic threats.

The Tribune-Democrat reports:

A former Philadelphia-area pastor pleaded guilty Tuesday in Somerset County court, accused of trying to arrange the murders of a judge and key witness in the case against him.

Jacob Matthew Malone, 39, pleaded guilty to terroristic threats, before Judge Scott P. Bittner.

The Somerset County District Attorney’s office withdrew a charge of solicitation to commit criminal homicide as part of the plea deal.

Malone was incarcerated at SCI-Laurel Highlands in Somerset for sex abuse when he allegedly offered to pay a fellow inmate $5,000 to kill the witness. Malone is accused of offering additional money if the inmate also killed Judge Jacqueline Carroll Cody, of the Chester County Court of Common Pleas, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

Malone was a pastor of Calvary Fellowship, a nondenominational Christian megachurch in Downingtown, Chester County, when police accused him in 2016 of providing alcohol to a 17-year-old girl and molesting her.

He pleaded guilty in 2017 to corruption of minors, institutional sexual assault and endangering the welfare of children, and was sentenced to three to six years in prison, court records indicate.

….

A sentencing date has not been scheduled.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

Black Collar Crime: Evangelical Pastor Anthony Stickland Accused of Rape

pastor anthony strickland

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.

Anthony Strickland, pastor of Freedom Center in Bono, Arkansas (no web presence), stands accused of raping and assaulting two women.

In June 2019, Strickland was charged with felony rape and second-degree battery.

The Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported at the time:

Jonesboro police said a Memphis hospital contacted the department last week after a 43-year-old woman came in with several injuries. She told police that 53-year-old Anthony Lee Strickland had attacked her, the affidavit said.

She said Strickland was intoxicated, and she gave investigators a “detailed account” of him hitting her at least two times in the face before raping her, according to the affidavit.

Officials said officers found three guns in Strickland’s car seat when they arrested him during a Wednesday traffic stop.

Authorities charged the Jonesboro resident with felony rape and second-degree battery.

Strickland is a pastor at the Freedom Center, a congregation he started in 2003, according to police and business records filed with the Arkansas secretary of state.

Phone numbers and social media accounts listed under the church’s name appeared to be deactivated on Friday.

Strickland was free on a $125,000 bond that he posted Thursday evening, according to the Craighead County sheriff’s office.

A judge set a no-contact order with his alleged victim and required Strickland wear an ankle location monitor.

According to the Jonesboro Sun:

The rape charge was dropped in July 2019 by then-Prosecuting Attorney Scott Ellington, and Strickland pleaded guilty to second-degree domestic battery and was sentenced to 60 months of probation.

Today, October 8, 2021, KAIT-8 reported:

A former Craighead County pastor faces up to 60 years in prison following his arrest for rape.

Jonesboro police arrested 55-year-old Anthony Lee Strickland of Bono on Oct. 6 on suspicion of rape and second-degree sexual assault.

According to the probable cause affidavit, the two victims claimed Strickland sexually assaulted them at his home.

On Friday, Craighead County District Court Judge Tommy Fowler found probable cause to arrest Strickland and set his bond at $150,000. The judge also ordered he have no contact with the victims.

According to the Jonesboro Sun, Strickland has now been officially charged with rape:

A former pastor has been charged with rape and second-degree sexual assault in a case involving a then-11- to 13-year-old girl and her 11-year-old sister.

District Judge Tommy Fowler found probable cause to charge Anthony Lee Strickland, 55, of Bono on Friday. Fowler set Strickland’s bond at $150,000.

According to the probable cause affidavit, the older girl, now 18, told her parents that when she stayed over about five to seven years ago with Strickland, who was a friend of the parents for 20 years and pastor of their church, he watched a movie with her. She said Strickland began rubbing her privates and asked her if it felt good.

The victim said she was able to get away and run downstairs.

After the victim’s mother was made aware of what happened with the older daughter, she sat down with her other children and asked them to tell her and her husband if anyone had touched them inappropriately and not be afraid to tell them.

The older girl briefly told her siblings what happened to her, and her 11-year-old sister broke down crying and said, “Momma, he did that to me, too,” the affidavit states.

The younger girl said Strickland began rubbing her private parts and she attempted to yell and scream. She said Strickland covered her mouth and said “shhhh.”

She said Strickland digitally penetrated her. She told him she needed to go to the bathroom and ran and got into bed with her brother.

According to news reports, Strickland no longer pastors Freedom Center.

bruce-gerencser-headshot

Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

Black Collar Crime: Baptist Pastor Dolhman Brown Accused of Raping and Inappropriately Touching a Minor Girl

dohlman brown

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.

Dolhman Brown, a pastor for seventeen years at First Emmanuel Baptist Church in Gretna, Louisiana (no web presence), stands accused of raping and inappropriately touching a minor girl.

Nola. com reports:

A pastor from Harvey has been arrested and accused of raping and inappropriately touching a girl over the course of four years, authorities said. 

Dolhman Brown, 58, was booked Sept. 24 with first-degree rape and sexual battery, said Capt. Jason Rivarde, a Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office spokesperson. 

….

The victim and her family are known to Brown, according to Jefferson Parish Assistant District Attorney Aimee St. Cyr. The abuse allegedly began in 2016 when the girl was about 9 years old.

Brown is accused of inappropriately touching the victim through her clothing on several occasions. But he later began directly touching her genitals, according to authorities.

Brown raped the girl and reportedly offered to pay her $100 to perform oral sex, authorities said. 

The victim told a relative about the abuse in 2020, but the relative didn’t believe the girl. Still, relatives no longer allowed Brown to be around her, according to authorities. 

In June, the girl was being treated at a hospital when she again revealed the abuse, this time to a doctor. Hospital officials contacted the Sheriff’s Office, and a criminal investigation was opened, according to an incident report. 

During Wednesday’s hearing, Brown’s attorney, Branden Villavaso, told the court that Brown, a grandfather of 15, had been a pastor at First Emmanuel Baptist Church in Gretna for 17 years and was not a threat or a flight risk. 

Magistrate Commissioner Paul Schneider set bond at $350,000 and order Brown to wear a GPS monitor if he is released from jail.

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Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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Black Collar Crime: IFB Pastor Robert Crouse Accused of Raping Mentally Disabled Children

pastor robert crouse

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.

Robert Crouse, pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Columbia City, Indiana, stands accused of raping three mentally disabled children. Faith Baptist is a King James-only Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) congregation.

The Ink Free News reports:

Robert M. Crouse, 57, 835 W. Dogwood Drive, Columbia City, is charged with three counts of rape when the victim is mentally disabled or deficient, all level 3 felonies.

On Dec. 17, 2020, an officer met with a woman at Faith Baptist Church in Columbia City. The woman told the officer that Crouse admitted to having sex with three children and that she believed the incidents occurred in the church. In court documents, the children are also described as young adults with special needs.

A Columbia City detective spoke with Crouse about what occurred. Crouse said the children willingly participated in the acts with him and that they would all watch pornography at the church.

According to court documents, Crouse said they watched pornography as a group about two to three times a month for the past two years. He allegedly said the children performed sexual acts in front of him and also onto him. Crouse also said he engaged in the sexual activity with them as well.

Crouse told the detective he didn’t record any of the sexual acts; he said he had sexual intercourse with one of the children about 10 to 15 times. Crouse said no alcohol, drugs or weapons were used during the activities.

He also said he didn’t engage in any sexual activity with anyone else aside from the three children. When asked why, Crouse said it was because they were willing participants.

Crouse said the majority of the acts happened at his home but that some occurred at the church. He told the detective he spoke with the three individuals and asked for forgiveness.

….

In their interview, the first child said Crouse, who they referred to as “Pastor Bob,” hadn’t done anything sexual to them. The child reported having no idea if anything sexual had occurred between Crouse and the other two children. When told that Crouse had already confessed to committing the sexual acts on them, the child didn’t disclose any further information.

The second child said Crouse showed them pornography at the church and asked them to perform a sexual act on him. When the child told him no, Crouse allegedly smacked the child’s face. The child said Crouse would make them call him ‘master’ and if they didn’t, Crouse would smack them.

The child also recalled an instance where the woman walked in on Crouse and them naked while at Crouse’s home. Crouse told the woman to leave. The child discussed in detail their sexual encounters with Crouse and also told the interviewer about the third child’s sexual interactions with Crouse. They also said Crouse would make the three of them call him ‘master.’

The third child discussed being inappropriately touched by Crouse and elaborated on how Crouse engaged in sexual activity with them. They said they had to call Crouse ‘master’ and that Crouse would occasionally hit them.

On Dec. 28, 2020, the detective interviewed the woman who reported the incidents to officers. The woman said she never walked in on Crouse and the children having sexual intercourse. She said she had suspicions that something was going on with Crouse and the children but didn’t investigate to see if it was true.

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Bruce Gerencser, 64, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 43 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.

You can email Bruce via the Contact Form.

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

Nanette Miles’ Civil Lawsuit Alleges IFB Preacher David Hyles Raped Her When She was a Teen

david-hyles-new-man

Nanette Miles, a former member of First Baptist Church in Hammond, Indiana, has filed a civil lawsuit against the church, Hyles-Anderson College, and David Hyles, the son of the late Jack Hyles.

NWI-Times reports:

A former Hammond resident claims in a federal lawsuit she was repeatedly raped as a young student more than four decades ago by the son of the then-pastor and president of the First Baptist Church of Hammond and Hyles-Anderson College.

Nanette Miles, who agreed to be named publicly for this article, said then-youth director David Hyles, who was son of then-Pastor Jack Hyles, called her into his office in September 1976 when she was 13. She alleges in the lawsuit she was given a drink and then blacked out.

She claims she woke up on the office floor while being raped by David Hyles.

Following the alleged attack, she was instructed to leave through the back door so she would not be seen by a secretary, the lawsuit claims. David Hyles said he would want to see her again, according the the lawsuit.

She was raped again by David Hyles in his office a week later, and he continued to rape her weekly “unless he was out of town on church business,” the lawsuit alleges. The sexual abuse allegedly continued for five years on church and college property.

“Defendants stole something innocent, sensitive and sacred from every minor they abused,” according to the lawsuit filed in the Northern District of Illinois by the Dallas, Texas, law firm of Forester Haynie.

….

The lawsuit is just the latest in a history of civil and criminal accusations of sexual abuse of underage girls by officials at the church, which was founded in 1887.

Joy Ryder, who now runs a support group for sex abuse victims, filed her own federal lawsuit earlier this year claiming David Hyles repeatedly raped her as a teenage girl in the late 1970s.

(Please see my post on Joy Ryder’s lawsuit.)

I have written numerous articles about David Hyles:

Serial Adulterer David Hyles Receives a Warm Longview Baptist Temple Welcome

UPDATED: Serial Adulterer David Hyles Has Been Restored

David Hyles Says “My Bad, Jesus”

Is All Forgiven for David Hyles?

Disgraced IFB Preacher David Hyles Helping “Fallen” Pastors Get Back on Their Horses

The David Hyles Saga

IFB Preacher David Hyles’ Latest Sex Scandal

I have also written a number of stories about his father, Jack Hyles:

The Legacy of Jack Hyles

Sexual Abuse and the Jack Hyles Rule: If You Didn’t See It, It Didn’t Happen

The Scandalous Life of Jack Hyles and Why it Still Matters

The Mesmerizing Appeal of Jack Hyles

1991 Current Affairs Report: Jack Hyles Stole My Wife

Jack Hyles Tells Unsubmissive Woman to Kill Herself

News Stories About IFB Preachers Jack and David Hyles

About Bruce Gerencser

Bruce Gerencser, 62, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 41 years. He and his wife have six grown children and twelve 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. For more information about Bruce, please read the About page.

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Bruce Gerencser