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Youth Pastor Jailed for Sexual Misconduct

Acts of sexual misconduct by clergy carry severe consequences.

Key Point 4-11.1. Clergy who engage in sexual contact with an adult or minor are subject to civil liability on the basis of several legal theories. They also are subject to criminal liability.

A Washington state court affirmed the conviction and 15-year prison sentence of a youth pastor who engaged in a sexual relationship with a member of the church youth group. Eric was the youth minister at a church and also taught at the church's school. On six occasions he had sexual intercourse with a member of his youth group (the "victim") who also attended the church school. Eric communicated with the victim via computer and the telephone. While communicating via the computer, he persuaded the victim to undress.

He then viewed her through a webcam. The victim later reported the incident to her mother, and she also disclosed their sexual relationship. The mother immediately reported the incidents to ...

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Richard R. Hammar is an attorney, CPA and author specializing in legal and tax issues for churches and clergy.

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Posted:
  • July 1, 2009

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