Black Collar Crime Round-Up: August 17, 2012

LaDonna Brackens and Anthony Lynn Thibodeaux • Jeremy Caraway • Jean-Guy Corbeil • Kris Gowdy
Anthony Lavon “A.L.” Smith • Corey Ray Weatherford • Darren Williams • Jordan Young

Anthony Lynn ThibodeauxLaDonna Brackens

Arrested: LaDonna Brackens, basketball & volleyball coach, Fairfield High School, Fairfield, Texas, in connection with the arrest of Anthony Lynn Thibodeaux, 36, former pastor of Fairfield Missionary Baptist Church, who has been charged with sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child, a 15-year-old girl. KXXV reports: “Authorities believe the alleged crime happened at [Brackens'] residence. Though she faces the same charges as Thibodeaux, it’s still unknown how Brackens participated in the alleged crime. Like Thibodeaux, Brackens also has several ties to the community and the church,”; she reportedly worked as the church secretary. Brackens has bonded out on $500,000; Thibodeaux is also free, after his bail was reduced from $500,000 to $100,000; KXXV notes: “He must stay away from children and is still allowed on his church’s property.” Story: Conservative Babylon, August 10, 2012; KXXV, August 15, 2012; KXXV, August 16, 2012. See also Brackens’ Facebook profile, where her interests/favorites include: “Reading the Bible,” “I’m a CHRISTIAN & I’m PROUD,” “Sexy After 40,” and “in my bed(:”.

Jeremy CarawayBond hearing: Jeremy Dewayne Caraway, 37, former pastor, Loyall Church of God, Harlan, Kentucky, who was indicted in 2011 on two counts of second-degree sodomy, two counts of first-degree sexual abuse, two counts of first-degree unlawful transaction with a minor and one count of use of electronic communications systems to procure a minor to commit a sexual offense, allegedly involving a girl under the age of 14 who belonged to his church. The hearing was triggered after it was discovered Caraway’s wife was offering daycare service in the couple’s home. According to the Harlan Daily: “The state has filed a motion to amend Caraway’s bond conditions to include he stay away from children with the exception of immediate family.” Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Jason Jackson said “the state believed the bond amendment was a necessary step after Caraway’s wife had allegedly attempted to offer daycare services to children.” WYMT reports that a woman seeking daycare for her special-needs son said that Monica Caraway “had a husband that was a preacher. She was talking about how she had a good Christian family. She had kids of her own. This woman seemed the nicest of the nice.” Monica Caraway’s “background came back clean,” but when the woman Googled Jeremy Caraway, “she found much more than she’d bargained for.” Caraway has denied all charges, saying he never touched the girl, “except when we were praying.” WYMT notes: “Caraway has also been arrested in Louisiana and Indiana. He also faced an armed robbery charge in Florida.” Story: WKYT, May 23, 2011; WYMT, August 13, 2012; Harlan Daily, August 16, 2012

Jean-Guy CorbeilCharged: Jean-Guy Corbeil, 76, former teacher, Collège Bourget (an exclusive private Roman Catholic school operated by the Clerics of Saint Viator), Rigaud, Quebec, with accessing and possessing child pornography. The Montreal Gazette reports: “Corbeil was arrested after two young men conducting maintenance work in his home found pornographic images and alerted Montreal police. Corbeil approached the men in a downtown park to solicit their services, and investigators say it is possible others were lured into his home under similar circumstances.” Story: Montreal Gazette, July 25, 2012

Kris GowdyFree on bail: Kris Allan Gowdy, 42, former lead pastor, Kingston West Church (Free Methodist), Kingston, Ontario; former student ministries pastor, Trulls Road Free Methodist Church, Courtice, Ontario; former director of youth ministries, Lakeview Church (also Free Methodist), Saskatoon, Saskatchewan; charged with luring a child via computer and attempted aggravated sexual assault. DurhamRegion.com reports: “Bail conditions imposed by the court include Mr. Gowdy be at home every night, be in the company of one of his parents at all times, not go near parks, schools, daycare centres or anywhere children under 16 might be, cannot have a job where he’s in a position of authority over anyone under 16, he can’t use a computer, cellphone or other electronic device, he can’t possess any sort of firearm, he has to surrender his passport and remain in Ontario. He must also makes himself available within five minutes at the front door of his parents’ Newcastle home if police check up on him.” Gowdy’s next court date is scheduled for August 27, 2012. Story: Conservative Babylon, August 10, 2012; DurhamRegion.com, August 15, 2012

Anthony Lavon SmithArrested: Anthony Lavon “A.L.” Smith, 47, pastor, Jericho Baptist Assembly, Compton, California, on suspicion of sexually molesting two girls over a period of several years, beginning when one was 11 and the other 17. The girls belonged to Smith’s church. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department believes there may be other victims. Smith is in custody on $350,000 bail. Two church websites (jerichovoices.org and jerichovoicesfaith.com; the latter has been archived) have been deleted, but a bio of Smith (essentially the same as found on the church websites) remains on a site selling Smith’s CD, “Came Out Saved.” It notes: “April 1997, Pastor Smith was led by God to move to Chicago, IL to help his sister and brother-in-law with their business. In Chicago, God began to separate him from the things in California that were hindering him from growing in Christ. … September 1998, he and his family were led back to California. In 1999, Pastor Smith was given a prophesy that he would be the Pastor of his father’s church, Jericho Baptist Church in the city of Compton, California. Having doubts about the prophecy, he continued to sing in the choir and assist the ministry in other areas. April 2000, he could not resist any longer, he received his calling and began to be mentored by his father Pastor Willie Smith. … November 2000, his father went home to be with the Lord. Pastor Smith knew then it was time to step into the position God had called him. On April 6, 2001, he officially became the Pastor of Jericho Baptist Church in Compton, California, where his wife, children and other family members continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.” As of this writing, his page at Black Preaching Network is also still accessible. Story: Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, August 16, 2012

Corey WeatherfordArrested: Corey Ray Weatherford, 27, youth minister, Reynolds Baptist Church, Paragould, Arkansas (“Standing on God’s WORD to build strong families”), “on suspicion of three counts of first-degree sexual assault … for allegedly engaging in sexual activity with two teenage girls at a summer youth church camp,” where he was head counselor, according to the Paragould Daily Press. Both girls were junior camp counselors; one was 16 and the other 17. Story: Paragould Daily Press, August 16, 2012

Darren WilliamsArrested: Darren R. Williams, 25, music teacher, Catholic Junior-Senior High School, Lafayette, Indiana, and charged with dissemination of material harmful to a minor, reportedly an underage girl. He is currently in custody on a $10,000 bond. Story: Republic, August 15, 2012; WLFI, August 16, 2012; Jconline.com, August 15, 2012; Jconline.com, August 16, 2012. See also Tim Wolf and Jeff McGown.

Jordan YoungArrested: Jordan Young, 25, music minister who also works with the youth ministry, Faith Tabernacle Apostolic Church, Junction City, Kansas, on charges of aggravated indecent liberties with a child, attempted criminal sodomy and solicitation of a child. Being held on a $250,000 bond, Young is scheduled for a hearing August 21, 2012. His father, Edwin Young, was pastor of the church; he is said to have “recently and abruptly resigned.” Story: WIBW, August 13, 2012; WIBW, August 15, 2012

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