Former Virginia Youth Minister Gets 3 Years for Inappropriate Behavior With Juvenile Student - NBC4 Washington

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Former Virginia Youth Minister Gets 3 Years for Inappropriate Behavior With Juvenile Student

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    Ex-Youth Minister Sentenced for Behavior With Teen Girl

    A judge sentenced a former youth minister accused of preying on teenage girls in his family's church. The victim's family called it a betrayal of trust. News4's Derrick Ward reports. (Published Monday, July 8, 2019)

    A judge sentenced a former youth worship leader and music teacher at a Virginia church to three years in prison Monday.

    In 2014, when he was 23, Jordan Baird, behaved inappropriately with a 16-year-old girl who took music lessons from him at The Life Church in Manassas, where his father is the pastor, prosecutors said.

    It started with inappropriate text messages, including saying he would marry her if he wasn't already married and telling her she's beautiful, prosecutors said.

    Then, during a music lesson, he took the girl into a dark room, locked the door, kissed her, forced her to touch him and later exposed himself when she refused his request for oral sex, prosecutors said.

    When she left the church that day, she told her mother she never wanted to go back.

    A court appointed psychologist testified that Baird suffered from a condition that made him sexually attracted to late adolescent girls and he lacked the impulse control to refrain from acting on that attraction.

    The victim’s family told the court Baird won their trust, then betrayed it.

    Baird apologized to the victim, his wife and his daughter.

    Before his sentence, he told the judge he accepted responsibility for his actions but said he isn’t the man he was then.

    Baird pleaded guilty to two more counts of indecent liberties of a minor and faced five years in prison on each count.

    The judge sentenced him to six years in prison with three suspended and three years supervised probation.

    Baird already served five months in jail after a jury found him guilty on five counts of taking indecent liberties with a minor involving a different girl.

    This case helped inspire a new law that just took effect in Virginia requiring religious officials to report any suspected abuse to local law enforcement.

    In this case, the church conducted an internal review, and police only learned about it after someone with ties to the church got fed up and tipped them.

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