Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pastor's son accuses him of threatening family

Alcoa pastor's son accuses him of pulling gun during argument at church
By Mark Boxley
Originally published: January 28. 2010 3:01AM
Last modified: January 28. 2010 12:19AM
The 32-year-old son of a well-known Alcoa pastor has taken out an order of protection against his father, claiming the man threatened him with a gun during an argument over the younger man's lack of church attendance.

The order of protection filed Monday by Michael Louis Colquitt, 32, Grayson Drive, Alcoa, stems from a Friday incident Colquitt reported to Alcoa police Sunday.

Colquitt reportedly told officers that his father — Joe Colquitt, 60, Evergreen Farms Lane, Greenback — called him to St. John Missionary Baptist Church, 178 Bessie Harvey Ave., Alcoa, “so they could talk.” Joe Colquitt was listed in the Alcoa report as being pastor at the church.

Once Michael Colquitt arrived to meet his father, he said Joe Colquitt was upset because he wasn't attending church like he should, and at some point alleged the argument came to a head with the pastor pulling out a handgun.

“(Michael) Colquitt stated (Joe) Colquitt pulled out a handgun and stated he would kill him, his wife and family,” the report said. “(Michael) Colquitt stated (his father) was upset because he cussed him.”

In the order of protection filed by Michael Colquitt — which was served to Joe Colquitt Tuesday — the allegations made by the younger man go one step further, as he claims his father “pulled out a gun and loaded it ... he pointed it at me numerous times ... he also punched me in my face.”

When officers contacted Joe Colquitt, he reportedly admitted that he did pull out a handgun during the argument, but said he pointed it at the ceiling, not his son.

The pastor denied threatening his son's wife and family, but said he told the 32-year-old that “because he cussed his father, God could kill his wife and family.”

According to the Tennessee Department of Safety, Joe Colquitt does not currently have a permit to carry a handgun.

Joe Colquitt declined to comment for this story when contacted by The Daily Times.

A phone message left for Michael Colquitt seeking comment was not returned.

The Alcoa police report also listed Joe Colquitt as an employee of Blount Memorial Hospital. While a representative of the hospital said she could not “confirm the employment status of any Blount Memorial Hospital employee or potential employee,” Colquitt was listed as working in customer relations in a BMH newsletter from October 2009. He was also listed as a BMH chaplain and customer service representative in an April 3, 2009 article in The Daily Times.

When the reporting officer contacted the Blount County District Attorney's Office about the case and explained the situation Monday, the office declined to prosecute Joe Colquitt “based on the conflicting stories and (because) there were no witnesses,” the report said.

The order of protection filed Monday prohibits Joe Colquitt from contacting Michael Colquitt or his family, and seeks to have a judge order the minister to “attend available counseling programs that address violence and control issues or substance abuse problems,” and prohibit him from owning, possessing, transporting or using a firearm or ammunition.

The case involving the order of protection is set to be heard at 9 a.m. Feb. 4 in front of Blount County General Sessions Judge Robert Headrick.

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