CHARLESTON - The parents of a Kanawha County girl have filed a sexual harassment suit against a local assistant youth pastor, claiming the man repeatedly sexually abused their daughter.
Attorney Henry E. Wood III filed the suit April 30 in Kanawha Circuit Court on behalf of the parents, identified only as J.G. and D.G. According to the suit, the assistant youth pastor of Chesapeake Apostolic Church, Timothy Edmonds, repeatedly used his position with the church to sexually abuse their teenage daughter.
Edmonds, 34 years old at the time, required the girl to dress a certain way and "would touch her in a sexual manner to the point where he was aroused and did otherwise satisfy his sexual predatory desires," the suit says.
He has been charged with one felony count of sexual abuse by a parent, guardian or custodian. He was released on bond and is awaiting trial.
Edmonds allegedly assaulted the girl both at the church and at a home he was remodeling on MacCorkle Avenue.
According to the police report, the parents were first made aware of the abuse when the girl wrote a letter in which she detailed intimate kissing between her and Edwards.
The lawsuit also says the girl, 16 years old at the time, was mentally and emotionally less developed that a normal 16-year-old.
The parents claim members of the church knew about the behavior of Edmonds, which allegedly also took place at a separate congregation before he was hired at Chesapeake Apostolic Church.
P.D. Priddy, the pastor of the congregation, and the Upper Kanawha Valley Christian School were also named as defendants in the case.
The parents claim the girl suffered emotional and mental injury and attended psychological counseling, suffered anxiety, pain and has otherwise been injured. They demand compensatory and punitive damages.
The case has been assigned to Judge Louis Bloom.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number 07-C-814