Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Former prison chaplain pleads guilty to sexual assault, to get 5 years

Posted By on Tue, Jul 5, 2016 at 1:13 PM

KENNETH DEWITT
  • KENNETH DEWITT
Prosecuting Attorney Henry Boyce of Newport announced today that Kenneth Dewitt, 67, of Patterson, a former chaplain at the McPherson women's prison in Newport, has pleaded guilty to three counts of third-degree sexual assault and will receive  concurrent 10-year prison sentences, with five years suspended, on each count.

Dewitt resigned as a chaplain in September 2014 after admitting "an inappropriate relationship with a subordinate [another chaplain]," Boyce said. A subsequent State Police investigation led to charges related to three inmates with whom he'd had sex. 

Boyce said, “After substantial preparation for trial in this case I am pleased that Mr. Dewitt has admitted his guilt and is willing to accept prison time as a result. Any time an employee of a correctional facility, not to mention a member of the clergy, takes advantage of his position of trust and authority to procure sexual favors the judicial system should exact punishment for that transgression.”
Dewitt initially faced 50 counts. From our earlier report:

In a statement of facts giving reasonable cause for the arrest, Boyce's office said the Correction Department had provided information that Dewitt had had sex with three inmates. This was after he was fired for having an open relationship with a parolee. It is a crime both for a Correction Department employee and for clergy, or other people in positions of trust, to use those positions to have sex with people under their control or trust.

The statement said a female inmate had gone to Dewitt's religious program in February 2008, became a student and stayed as a clerk. In 2010 or 2011, she said he kissed her and it shocked her, but it lead to more intimate contact. He started calling her at 6 a.m. on Sundays for sexual activity including oral sex and sexual intercourse. She said she knew other women he'd call on different days.

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (6)

Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Matt Campbell files ethics complaint against Dennis Milligan

    Little Rock attorney and blogger Matt Campbell, whose knack for deep research brought down Mark Darr, Mike Maggio and Dexter Suggs, now has his sights trained on another worthy target. Today, he filed a 113-page ethics complaint against state Treasurer Dennis Milligan that includes 14 separate allegations.
    • Aug 20, 2015
  • State Police issues statement on Jason Rapert 'threats'

    The State Police have issued a minor clarification in what appears to be an effort to soothe an enraged Sen. Jason Rapert, exposed here as overly excited about both a Conway parking lot question from a constituent as well as some inflammatory Internet rhetoric that he's interpreted as a dire threat on his life. State cops took his reports seriously, they say. But in the end, they found nothing actionable.
    • Sep 15, 2015
  • Transgender electrician may sue employer over her firing

    Federal Judge Susan Webber Wright has ruled that Patricia Dawson, a transgender woman, may pursue her lawsuit that she was wrongfully fired by her employer, H & H Electric, because of her sex.
    • Sep 16, 2015

Most Shared

Visit Arkansas

Forest bathing is the Next Big Thing

Forest bathing is the Next Big Thing

Arkansas is the perfect place to try out this new health trend. Read all about the what, why, where and how here.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation