August 6, 2008

Records list lewd texts, molestings by pastor Darrell Gilyard

August 6, 2008

By Jim Schoettler, The Times-Union

She was a 15-year-old Jacksonville girl with behavior problems whose parents trusted their pastor to give her private counseling.

But details the teen gave to police about what she said happened in darkened rooms and elsewhere describes anything but help meant for a troubled child.

The teen's allegations of being molested and receiving sexually explicit text messages were included in 800 pages of records released Tuesday in three criminal counts against former pastor Darrell Gilyard.

The records also include pages of lewd text messages involving a cellular phone belonging to Gilyard and another teenage church member. That 14-year-old girl's initial texting to Gilyard led to a crude string of phone sex banter that is part of the criminal case.

Gilyard, 46, was arrested in January and charged with lewd and lascivious conduct on the 14-year-old girl. The case began when the girl's mother contacted police after finding some of the text messages.

Charges of lewd and lascivious conduct and lewd and lascivious molestation were added in March. The new charges involved the 15-year-old, who was friends with the other teen. Both girls said they had their encounters with Gilyard last year, well before he took a leave of absence and eventually resigned from the church as the case became public.

Not guilty plea was entered

Gilyard has pleaded not guilty to all counts and has been free on $5,000 bond since his arrest. His next court appearance is scheduled for Sept. 3.

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