Its been several years in the making, but the time is drawing to a close.
A Tarrant County (Fort Worth, Texas) clerk for the 236th District Court confirmed to GCM Watch today that the sexual abuse trial with Sherman Allen and COGIC as defendants will be called on September 21st. The court clerk stated that while attorneys will be notified of the date, it may or may not necessarily start on the 21st.
Is a day of reckoning at hand for the nation’s largest black pentecostal denomination?
This is perhaps the first of many lawsuits against the church which will play out in the public eye, unlike others where victims have “settled out of court” and thus allowed the church to fly under the radar on the issue.
Allen is being accused of rape and COGIC, Inc is a co-defendant based on the actions of Bishop JN Haynes of Dallas who is alleged to have known of Allen’s long history of sexually and physically abusing women. It took the church 3 months after the shocking allegations broke publicly to suspend Allen –widely believed to be on the fasttrack to the COGIC bishop’s ranks– from his offices.
Stan Broome, a lawyer for the Davina Kelly said, “We’re glad that future victims may be protected, but we don’t understand why the church, since they had full knowledge this was going on, didn’t take action sooner.”
UPDATE: The trial date has been moved to November 16.
Count on GCM Watch to keep you updated on this precedent setting trial.