Wednesday, August 21, 2019

UPDATED::DC priest arrested on charges of child sexual abuse | WTOP

 UPDATE::  Catholic priest found guilty of sexually abusing girls at his D.C. parish
A Catholic priest was convicted Thursday of sexually abusing two girls at a D.C. church after an emotional trial during which prosecutors said he used his position of trust to victimize the young parishioners.

Urbano Vazquez, 47, showed no emotion as the jury foreman read the guilty verdicts in D.C. Superior Court.

The jurors found that Vazquez groped a 13-year-old girl in 2015 and kissed and groped a 9-year-old girl in 2016. The incidents happened while he was serving as an assistant pastor at the Shrine of the Sacred Heart in Columbia Heights.
The D.C. Catholic priest charged last month with sexually assaulting a teenage girl was again arrested Tuesday and accused of abusing two additional victims, including a girl who was 9 years old at the time, authorities said.

Urbano Vazquez, 46, assistant pastor of the Shrine of the Sacred Heart in Northwest Washington, turned himself in to authorities Tuesday on charges of second-degree sexual assault of a minor and misdemeanor assault of an adult woman. The alleged abuse of the juvenile began when she was 9 years old and continued until she was 10, according to William Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.

According to a D.C. police report, the girl reported the priest kissed her on the lips and several times inappropriately touched her over her clothing.

D.C. police have arrested a Catholic priest on charges of child sexual abuse.

Urbano Vazquez, 46, of Northeast D.C., was arrested Wednesday following allegations of sexual abuse. Vazquez has been the parochial vicar at the Shrine of the Sacred Heart Parish in Columbia Heights since 2014.

Police said in a news release that Vazquez had sexual contact with a child without permission in May 2015.

The victim was 13 years old at the time of the alleged abuse, and the suspect was 42 years old. She said in a statement to police that Vazquez placed his hand down the front of her shirt and onto her bare breast on two occasions.

DC priest arrested on charges of child sexual abuse | WTOP

Former Batesville pastor arrested on rape charges | KATV

According to KATV content partner KAIT, a Batesville man was arrested Monday on rape charges following two separate incidents in 2009 and 2014.

A probable cause affidavit states that the Independence County Sheriff’s Department received a tip from the Arkansas State Police hotline regarding sexual abuse on April 10, 2019.

According to the affidavit, the victim told investigators that 29-year-old Thomas Cody Kramer abused her throughout her childhood, and only stopped when she started her menstrual cycle.

The victim also told investigators Kramer threatened her often about speaking out about the sexual abuse.

Former Batesville pastor arrested on rape charges | KATV

UPDATED::Alabama pastor jailed on sex abuse charges -

UPDATE:: Three more people accuse former Florence pastor of sexual abuse
Three more people are accusing former Florence pastor John Martin of sexual abuse.

Martin was previously arrested, booked into the Lauderdale County Jail, and charged with four counts of sexual abuse of a child.

The latest allegations stem from Martin’s time in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Three people tell NBC affiliate WSMV that they were also abused by Martin when he was a youth pastor at Bellwood Baptist Church back in 2003.
An Alabama pastor is jailed on four felony charges of sexual abuse after his own church members reported him to the authorities.

John Martin, a 41-year-old from Florence, is held in the Lauderdale County jail with bail set at $60,000. Martin recently resigned after nine years as the pastor of Lighthouse Baptist Church in Florence.

On June 23, Martin resigned and admitted to church members that he had inappropriate relationships with young men, said Angie Hamilton, an assistant district attorney in Lauderdale County. Church members told the authorities about the admission, and a criminal investigation began.

Alabama pastor jailed on sex abuse charges -

Monday, August 19, 2019

Clergyman Joseph Gates charged with DUI Saturday night

A member of the clergy at St. Isabel Catholic Church on Sanibel Island gave police his bank card instead of his driver's license when he was stopped for driving under the influence late Saturday night.

Joseph R. Gates, 35, a parochial vicar at St. Isabel, was charged with driving under the influence with a blood-alcohol level twice the legal state limit, according to a police report.

Gates was stopped by a Sanibel police officer as he was driving west near the church on Sanibel-Captiva Road shortly before midnight.

Clergyman Joseph Gates charged with DUI Saturday night

Roxboro minister sentenced to serve up to 40 years in child sex sting ::

 A Roxboro minister was sentenced Wednesday to serve up to 40 years in federal prison after he accepted a plea deal of making and possessing child pornography in a case where prosecutors said he carried on a sexual relationship with an underage boy that spanned several years.

Andre Thorpe, 36, was indicted in May 2018, and as part of the plea deal he was convicted on one count of possessing pornography and one count of manufacturing pornography.

He was also sentenced to lifetime probation.
Thorpe has been identified as a suspect in other underage child sex cases, but this was the first one where he has been convicted.

Officials said Thorpe, who was affiliated with several churches in the Triangle, met his victims at church and during his involvement with the Boys and Girls Club of Durham.

Roxboro minister sentenced to serve up to 40 years in child sex sting ::

Chapel Hill pastor arrested with fake Cartier jewelry | Raleigh News & Observer

A Chapel Hill pastor is facing charges after being found with thousands of fake designer bracelets valued at $24.4 million — the state’s largest single seizure since 2004, according to the N.C. Secretary of State’s office.

JianGang “Frank” Lan, 34, was arrested and charged with felony criminal use of a counterfeit trademark Friday, according to a news release from the Secretary of State’s Office. The office enforces laws that protect the holders of state and federally registered trademarks.

Officers raided Deer Park Community Church at 108 W. Rosemary St. in Chapel Hill, where they say they found him with more than 3,200 counterfeit Cartier bracelets, the release says.

Chapel Hill pastor arrested with $24 million in fake Cartier jewelry, investigators say

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Church members’ suspicion sparks arrest of SC pastor | Charlotte Observer

Congregants at Bethlehem Grove Baptist Church in South Carolina went to deputies with concerns about their pastor — only to discover he was a registered sex offender, local media outlets reported Friday.

Police say they arrested Henry Masten II on Thursday at the church for failing to register his employment with Laurens County and the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, according to Fox Carolina.

The sheriff’s office did not respond to McClatchy newsgroup’s request for information on Friday.

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Church members’ suspicion sparks arrest of SC pastor | Charlotte Observer