Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Elder abuse

Police: Dunn pastor assaulted assisted living center patient
Paul Burke JohnsonRELATEDAllegations against Dunn pastor came from assisted living center
Sexual misconduct charge rocks Harnett County church
Dunn pastor charged with sexual battery
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Benson, N.C. — The sexual misconduct charges against a Harnett County pastor involved a patient at an assisted living center in Benson, police said Monday.

Paul Burke Johnson, 74, the pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Dunn, was charged Thursday with four counts of misdemeanor sexual battery.

Benson Police Chief Kenneth Edwards said Johnson had visited patients at Liberty Commons Nursing Center, at 2315 N.C. Highway 242 North, for the past year and had several encounters with a 64-year-old woman there. The woman has a diminished mental capacity, Edwards said.

According to a statement released by police, Johnson had "repeated inappropriate sexual contact" with the woman and has "fully admitted his involvement in the incidents," which took place over the past four or five months.

A nurse at the facility witnessed an encounter between Johnson and the woman on Thursday and reported it to supervisors, who called police.

"At Liberty Commons, we take all allegations of potential abuse very seriously," administrator Jackie Livermore said in a statement.

The alleged encounters didn't involve intercourse or any contact that would constitute a felony, Edwards said, so Johnson was charged with misdemeanors.

Johnson, who was released after posting a $20,000 bond, did not show up at church Sunday.

"Right now everybody is just confused, upset. Everybody is in tears," church member James Norris said. "It's a tough time for everybody."

Johnson is also on the Board of Ministers for the Campbell University Divinity School. University President Jerry Wallace said Sunday that he had heard of the allegations but wasn't prepared to comment on them.

Johnson is scheduled to appear in court May 6.

1 comment:

Ray S 209 said...

I am a NC resident living near where this occurred. I have been following this case because I find the religious christian movement repugnant. The self-righteousness and the hypocritical, judgmental attitudes of these types of people truly sicken me. I want to point out that this news story posted by WRAL has been edited from what they had posted yesterday. I find it odd that yesterday in the body of the story they had a direct quote from the dear man of god, where he essentially blamed the victim, saying she "came on to him" and was flirtatious! Today, that quote has been removed from this story. Also changed was the title of the article, the word "Sexual" was removed, now saying only "Dunn pastor assaulted..."