Friday, November 23, 2012

South African pastor arrested for raping 12-year old girl, sexually assaulting two others

Johannesburg - A Soweto pastor has been arrested for allegedly raping a 12-year-old girl and sexually assaulting two other girls in the area, Soweto police said on Thursday.
 
Warrant Officer Kay Makhubela said the 62-year-old pastor of a Zion Apostolic church in Soweto was arrested on Wednesday afternoon.
 
He allegedly raped the 12-year-old girl and sexually assaulted two others aged 13 and 15. The 12-year-old girl reported the matter to her teachers at school, who alerted the police.
 
This was after she told her mother about the first crime that happened a month earlier, but the mother did not believe her at the time.
 
The other two girls came forward after the 12-year-old reported the matter. The girls told the police the pastor had not raped them but had repeatedly given them money after fondling them.
 
One of the girls had to be taken to a place of safety, as she was afraid to go back home after the matter was reported to the police.
 
She had also told her guardian about the alleged abuse, but was also not believed.
 
The pastor apparently cornered the girls when they came to buy from a spaza shop on his property.
He was expected to appear in the Protea Magistrate's Court on Friday.
 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Oklahoma Pastor arrested for raping teen girl

COAL COUNTY, OK -- A Former Coalgate youth pastor has been arrested for sex crimes against children. 28-year-old Dustin Werneberg was taken into custody Wednesday on several second degree rape charges.

An affidavit states the sexual abuse has been going on for more than a year. Kristen Shanahan spoke with the lead investigator of this case and the pastor who says he never believed his employee could be involved in something like this.

Police tell us Werneburg was arrested at Blanchard Middle School in McClain County Wednesday where he was serving as a teacher's aid. He is now behind bars in Coal County on three counts of Second Degree Rape, three counts of Forcible Sodomy, a charge of Lewd or Indecent Proposals to a Child and Lewd Molestation. Investigators say all these crimes were committed against a girl under the age of 16.

Coalgate police investigator Richard Costantino says former youth minister Dustin Ray Werneburg was arrested on eight sex crime charges after a parent came forward saying Werneburg had inappropriate contact with their daughter.
 
"Information was passed to us. We had it checked out. Found that it was factual and we are still proceeding with the investigation," Costantino said.

An affidavit states the victim's parent found inappropriate messages and pictures between Werneburg and his daughter. It also shows the two began texting in November of 2011 and exchanged at least 1,000 messages.

"It happens more in the United States than people think. Basically because of the internet because it allows more people to come into contact with other people," Costantino said.
The affidavit states Werneburg was a youth pastor at an area church.

Pastor of the First Baptist Church in Coalgate, Jeff Self, says Werneburg did work at his church for three years.
"We had some allegations of sexual misconduct him basically inappropriately approaching a teenage girl. And with that we met with leadership of the church and asked for his resignation," Self said.
Wereneburg resigned in August, but Self says this was not the first allegation made against Werneburg.

"We had three allegations over the course of three years. Two of them he had come to me and said you are going to hear this personally, and it was a he said she said and we believed him and there was no anything else about it, but once we had that third allegation that was really significant in August," Self said.

Self says since no victims came forward he did not believe the allegations against Werneburg. He says Werneburg passed a background check before working at the church and appeared to be a good family man.
 
"You look back and you go 'were their signs I should have seen. Did I miss something? I had the guy in my home and his family. It puts all kinds of questions in your mind that really makes it harder to trust the next person," Self said.

Self says right now they are not looking for a new youth minister.

"We're just dealing with this situation and trying to make sure our students are able to get through this and not to lose their faith in God through this," Self said.

Self says Sunday morning he talked to church members about Werneburg's charges. Werneburg's preliminary hearing is set for December the 6th.

http://www.kxii.com/home/headlines/Former-youth-minister-arrested-on-sex-crimes--180082971.html

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Colorado Pastor arrested for sexually assaulting young female

A former Highlands Ranch youth pastor at Mountain View Community Church has been arrested on charges that he allegedly sexually assaulted a former female youth group attendee.

Matt Capranelli, 41, was arrested on a warrant Nov. 13 in Pueblo and is currently free on a $50,000 bond. He faces eight felony charges including sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust.
 
“I just want our community to know that our hearts are grieved by this revelation,” said Jim Phillips, senior pastor with the church. “This stands in direct contrast to why our church exists.

“Our hearts go out to the individuals and families involved. We are here to bring comfort and peace in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ. We ask that (people) please lift up in prayer for the individuals and families involved.”

The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the case against Capranelli in June 2012 and charges have been filed in the 18th Judicial District Court. As the investigation is still open no more information is available at this time.

Anyone with information relative to the case is asked to please call Detective Tony Garza at 303-784-7840.

http://www.ourcoloradonews.com/highlandsranch/news/former-highlands-ranch-youth-pastor-arrested-for-sexual-assault/article_19ec7ca8-2f67-11e2-b302-0019bb2963f4.html

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Missouri Pastor arrested for molesting fourteen year old girl, faces more charges

Missouri Baptist Convention officials are watching a member church whose pastor was arrested recently on sexual abuse charges a year after his previous acquittal of child molestation.

Travis Smith, 42, of California, Mo., appeared for arraignment Oct. 16 in Moniteau County court. He faces charges of forcible rape, statutory rape and sexual abuse alleged to have occurred in 1998, statutory rape in 1999 and statutory rape and sodomy in 2005.

Smith, pastor of First Baptist Church in Stover, Mo., since 2006, was found not guilty on Sept. 28, 2011, by a jury in Morgan County of misdemeanor child molestation of a 14-year-old girl in 2009. A separate charge of statutory rape was dropped because that accuser turned out to have been 17, the age of consent in Missouri, rather than 15 as first claimed when their alleged improper relationship began.

The First Baptist Church, Stover, website listed Smith as its pastor as of Oct. 23. Local media reported Oct. 3 that church members were standing by their pastor despite the charges. Community residents countered with a vigil on behalf of his alleged victims, protesting a church fish fry that was described in conflicting media reports as a show of support for Smith and an annual church event that just happened to coincide with news of the arrest.

The church website lists affiliations with the Southern Baptist Convention and Lamine Baptist Association. Rob Phillips, communications team leader with the Missouri Baptist Convention, said First Baptist Church in Stover has contributed more than $12,500 to the Cooperative Program year-to-date, making the church a member of the Missouri Baptist Convention, and the church has not contacted the state convention regarding its affiliation.

“We are aware of the situation at First Baptist Church, Stover, and are in contact with the association's director of missions, who is working closely with the pastor and the church,” Phillips said in an e-mail.

“While we respect the independence of the local church and have no direct authority over it, we are deeply grieved by the allegations,” Phillips said. “We pray that the courts will administer justice fairly and swiftly, and that there will be healing among the wounded church members. We also pray the church members will have the wisdom, grace and courage to act biblically in their dealings with their pastor.”

Smith is out of jail on $70,000 bond. His next court appearance is scheduled for 9 a.m., Nov. 13, in Moniteau County Judicial Circuit 26 in California, Mo., before Associate Circuit Judge Peggy Richardson.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol arrested Smith Oct. 1 on six felony charges involving multiple victims following a lengthy investigation by its division of drug and crime control. State policed turned him over to the Moniteau County Sheriff's Department.

The charges against him carry penalties ranging from a minimum of a year in prison up to life, depending on circumstances.

http://www.abpnews.com/ministry/congregations/item/7910-church-scrutinized-after-pastor%E2%80%99s-arrest

Zimbabwean Pastor arrested for raping woman eight times

Zimbabwe – Pastor Wilson Duncan Kwambana, founder and pastor of Mount Olives Church, allegedly raped a congregant several times claiming to be strengthening her Holy Spirit, a court heard.

Pastor Kwambana, 32, yesterday appeared before the magistrate court facing eight counts of rape. The pastor allegedly told the 22-year-old mechanical engineering student that she had a very bad evil spirit in her.

The pastor later told the girl that the Holy Spirit had chosen a husband for her, and the husband who is identified as Tendai Chivangu.

In June last year, the pastor and her claimed holy spirit husband, including other members of their church went to a valley and told the girl and her holy spirit husband to have sexual intercourse that it will help chase the evil spirit in her away.

During the same month, the Pastor took the girl and other church members again to a Hill, where he had sexual intercourse with her four times in his car.

The court was told that the same team went to different places where the Pastor and her holy spirit husband took turns to have sexual intercourse with the girl.

The Magistrate court released the Pastor on $100 bail and ordered him to return to court on November 21 for trial, MyZimbabwe reports.

http://africanspotlight.com/2012/11/church-founder-arrested-for-raping-young-girl-8-times-claims-he-was-strengthening-holy-spirit/

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Canadian Christian man guilty of murdering his teen cousin

New Brunswick is a Canadian province that is 86% Christian. It looks like these people are from the First Nations, but we all know how they were brutally raped, beaten and forced to accept Christianity (google residential schools) many years ago.

MIRAMICHI, N.B. - A courtroom in northern New Brunswick erupted in cheers Saturday after a man was found guilty of first-degree murder in the death of his 16-year-old cousin.

A six-man, six-woman jury found Curtis Bonnell guilty after deliberating for about six and a half hours late Friday and early Saturday.

Family members of the victim — Hilary Bonnell — wept openly in court as the verdict was read. Curtis Bonnell showed no emotion and members of his immediate family quickly left the courthouse.

Outside the courthouse, Hilary's mother, Pam Fillier, sobbed as relatives and friends hugged her.

She said it will take a long time to heal.

"I don't think I will ever really have true closure," said Fillier. "She was my only little girl and him being guilty doesn't give her back to me."

The conviction carries an automatic sentence of life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years, however, Judge Fred Ferguson has scheduled a sentencing hearing for Nov. 14 to allow members of Hilary's family to read victim impact statements.

During the seven-week trial at the Court of Queen's Bench in Miramichi, the Crown alleged the 32-year-old Bonnell picked up the girl while driving on a rural stretch of road, sexually assaulted her and killed her.

Prosecutor Bill Richards told the court that Bonnell buried her body near an old firing range to avoid detection.

The girl's disappearance from the Esgenoopetitj First Nation on Sept. 5, 2009, sparked an extensive search and gripped the native community for two months.

Bonnell was arrested on Nov. 8, 2009, and led police to the burial site the next day.

During subsequent interviews with police that were entered as evidence, Bonnell told officers that he fought with Hilary, sexually assaulted her and killed her.

But during the trial, Bonnell offered a different version of events.

He testified that he woke up on Sept. 5, 2009, after a night of alcohol and drugs to find Hilary dead next to him in his pickup truck. He said he didn't know how she died, but panicked and buried her.

Bonnell said police filled his head with what they believed happened, and he just told them what he thought they wanted to hear.

The court was told that autopsy and toxicology reports were inconclusive on the exact cause of death, but termed the manner of death as a homicide.

A forensic pathologist called by the defence disagreed with the homicide determination.

Dr. David Chiasson of the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto said at best it was "criminally suspicious." He suggested Hilary could have died as a result of "positional asphyxia," which can happen when someone is intoxicated and they get in a slumped position that constricts their airway.

Following the trial, Crown attorney Bill Richards told reporters that the lack of a clear cause of death made the prosecution difficult.

"We had to give the answer to the jury circumstantially with the clothing on Hilary as she was found, the laceration above her eye as well as that very, very important and crucial text message," he said. "Those are the things I think sealed the first-degree murder conviction in the jury's mind."

During the trial, the jury was shown two text messages that Hilary sent to Haylie Bonnell, the accused's sister, on the morning she disappeared.

They read, "Please answer me I'm scared," and "OMF text me I'm scared."

Haylie's phone battery had died and the messages weren't retrieved until five days later.

RCMP Sgt. Greg Lupson said police had little to go on after the girl's sudden disappearance.

"It is just good old fashioned police work that led to this," said Lupson on Saturday. "There was no one piece of critical evidence that was pointed to."

Defence attorney Gilles Lemieux said he was surprised Bonnell was found guilty of first-degree murder.

The jury had the options of first- or second-degree murder, manslaughter, or not guilty.

He said an appeal is being considered.

"We are definitely going to look at our different avenues as far as that goes," Lemieux said as he left the courthouse. "I fully anticipate that we'll get instructions to file an appeal."

The defence would have 30 days to file a notice of appeal, following the Nov. 14 sentencing hearing.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Michigan Pastor arrested for murdering fiancee's daughter, also has a history of murdering women

The murder confession of John D. White, a Michigan pastor who admitted to killing his fiancĂ©e’s daughter in what is being described as a sexually-motivated crime, has left a community in Broomfield Township stunned.

White, an ex-convict, has been a pastor at the small town’s Christ Community Fellowship for three years. He reportedly asked his congregation of 14 members to start a prayer chain for 24-year-old Rebekah Gay when she was still missing, before making his startling murder confession to investigators, said a friend of White’s to the Associated Press.

"He was pretty shook up. He said the police were giving him a hard time,” said Donna Houghton, 76, a church elder who helped hire White back in 2009.

The 55-year-old pastor was charged with first-degree murder on Thursday, and remained jailed without bond on Friday at the Isabella County Courthouse.

"We are all absolutely floored," said Houghton, who claimed that she had defended White’s innocence up until she was told that he had already confessed to the murder. “Then he had no leg to stand on.”

Houghton said that White was close with Gay and had frequently babysat her 3-year-old son while she was away at work. White told investigators that after burying Gay’s naked body in a wooded area nearby, he went back to her trailer and dressed up her son in a costume so that the child’s father could pick him up for Halloween.

White also admitted to repeatedly striking Gay’s head with a mallet and strangling her with a zip tie, allegedly in pursuit of a sexual fantasy of having sex with her dead body. He said that he could not remember if he had had intercourse with her after she lost consciousness.

According to the Lansing State Journal, it’s not the first time White has been charged with a similar crime against a young woman. Houghton said that she and the entire congregation had all been aware of White’s criminal history when he applied for the pastor position at the church.

White served almost 12 years in prison for manslaughter, after killing a 26-year-old woman in Kalamazoo County. He had previously been sentenced to probation in 1981, for choking and stabbing a 17-year-old girl in Battle Creek, Mich.

"He was absolutely contrite," said Houghton. "All kinds of people turn around and meet the Lord and they are a different person. He was doing a lot of good in the community. ... He was doing a lot of good and Satan did not want him doing good, and Satan got to him."

http://www.ibtimes.com/pastor-charged-murder-fiancees-daughter-had-history-violence-against-women-858344

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Arizona man arrested for attempting to lure 11 and 13 year old girls

Arizona is 92% Christian.

PHOENIX (AP) — A man accused of trying to lure two young girls into his car in Tempe last year has been sentenced to lifetime probation with sex offender terms.
 
Maricopa County prosecutors say 31-year-old Joseph Jamie Larosa also was ordered Thursday to register as a sex offender.
 
Larosa was arrested in September 2011 on suspicion of luring a minor and attempted public sexual indecency.
 
Police say a man attempted to lure an 11-year-old girl and 13-year-old girl into his car as they were walking to Kyrene Middle School in Tempe.
 
The girls ignored the man and reported the incident when they arrived at school.
Larosa later was arrested at his Tempe home and booked into jail.

http://www.sfgate.com/news/crime/article/Tempe-man-gets-lifetime-probation-in-luring-case-4000971.php#ixzz2B1sKSZpw

Arizona Pastor arrested for luring young girl



YUMA, Ariz. -- A youth pastor in Yuma is accused of giving sexual items to a minor.

A woman contacted the Yuma County Sheriff's Office Saturday night and said her daughter had received items of a sexual nature from Robert Warren, 43, according to Lt. Darren Simmons.

Investigators contacted Warren at his residence and he was taken into custody for questioning. Warren reportedly admitted to buying the items and delivering them to the victim's home.

Warren was booked into the Yuma County Adult Detention Facility on two counts of furnishing harmful material to a minor.

Warren is a youth pastor at Valley Baptist Church, 3830 W. Eighth St.

At this time, there does not appear to be any more victims in this case, according to Simmons. However, anyone with any further information should contact the Yuma County Sheriff's Office at 928-783-4427.


http://www.azfamily.com/news/Youth-pastor-arrested-in-Yuma-176854141.html