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Former Tabernacle Choir member charged with sexual abuse

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NNN0LHI Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 06:47 AM
Original message
Former Tabernacle Choir member charged with sexual abuse
http://newsnet.byu.edu/story.cfm/61286

A former Mormon Tabernacle Choir member faces a judge today (Oct. 6, 2006) at 8:30 a.m. in 4th District Court where prosecutors will charge him with four accounts of sexual exploitation.

Fifty-one-year-old Robert Matthews drove four children, ages 7 to 15, to a hot springs up Spanish Fork Canyon in late July and recorded them while the children swam naked, according to a police report filed last week.

"When he was arrested he corroborated much of what the children had to say about what happened," said Sgt. Shawn Chipman of the County Sheriff's sex crimes division. "We have seized those {pictures and video tapes} but we haven't viewed them yet, because, frankly, there's a huge backlog on cases and we have a limited amount of forensic specialists. But we hope to view them soon."

All four boys have come out as witnesses against Matthews, and officers have spoken with all of their parents about the alleged hot springs incident.

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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 06:52 AM
Response to Original message
1. Filming was a very, very bad idea
but this is one of those weird areas where "sexual abuse" charges may be overkill.

Too bad we don't have a law against stupidity or bad judgment.
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Divernan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 07:20 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Too bad DU doesn't have a law to read the whole article
before responding. The article (see my post below) details that the guy directed the boys into specific positions and was nude himself while filming.
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Divernan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 07:18 AM
Response to Original message
2. He only joined choir last January; they've kicked him out already
Utah County attorneys will formally charge Matthews with three accounts of sexual exploitation of a minor and at least one count of sexual lewdness involving a child, officials said.

Matthews also allegedly "directed them into positions while taking pictures and remained nude himself," according to an initial police report. Matthews also showed the footage of the alleged hot springs incident to the boys later, according to the report.

"The summer overnight camp was not a scout function," Chipman said. "The outing wasn't church-related at all."

LDS church spokesman Dale Bills told the Daily Herald that Matthews, who had joined the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir in January, had been "released" after the church learned of the allegations. The church strongly condemns child abuse and will not tolerate such actions by anyone affiliated with our faith," Bills said. "Any member convicted of child abuse faces church disciplinary action. Robert Matthews has been released from his position in the choir while the police investigation is proceeding."









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