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Sylvester, GA - Unity Baptist Church Deacon, Jerry Dan Heflin, Charged with Extensive Child Sexual Crimes

Sylvester, GA - Unity Baptist Church Deacon, Jerry Dan Heflin, Charged with Extensive Child Sexual Crimes
Published: June 5, 2024
By: Darla Medina
Last Updated on June 5, 2024

Georgia Deacon Charged with Child Sexual Crimes

The Biblical Recorder has reported that Jerry Dan Heflin, a 60-year-old deacon at Unity Baptist Church located at 101 Bryant Dr, Sylvester, GA 31791, has been arrested and charged with over 60 felony counts, including child molestation, aggravated sodomy, sexual battery against a child, and incest.

The arrest took place on May 7th, 2024, and has sent shockwaves through the local community. Heflin, who had held a position of trust and authority within the church, is now facing the full force of the law for his alleged crimes said to have occurred in 2016.

In response to the situation, the leadership of Unity Baptist Church has released a statement, distancing the church from the allegations and assuring the public that the church has internal security measures in place to ensure the safety of all individuals, including children and adults. The statement emphasizes that none of the alleged incidents occurred at the church or any church-related activity.

Heflin has been denied bond and is currently being held in the Worth County Jail as the investigation continues. The charges against him are a stark reminder of the importance of vigilance and the need to prioritize the protection of the most vulnerable members of our society.

John Bey
Hi, I’m attorney John Bey. I’m a lawyer here in Georgia and Ohio. If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, I’d be happy to discuss your legal options. Call me on the number below. It costs nothing, and it would be my honor to help you.
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Holding the Church Accountable for Clergy Abuse

The arrest of prominent deacon Jerry Dan Heflin on over 60 felony charges, including child molestation and incest, has sent shockwaves through the local community. As authorities continue their investigation, victims and the public are seeking answers and accountability. We sat down with experienced Georgia clergy abuse lawyer John Bey to discuss the legal options available for survivors of clergy abuse and how to ensure negligent parties are held responsible.

Editor Darla Medina (DM): Thank you for joining us today. As a Georgia clergy abuse lawyer, can you share some insight into the legal rights available for those who have been sexually abused by a church official, like a deacon?

John Bey, Esq. (JB): Absolutely, Darla. In cases of clergy abuse, victims have the right to pursue civil claims against the abuser, but they may have grounds to file a claim against the church or organization that failed to protect them. This can include claims for sexual assault, battery, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

DM: And what about holding the church or organization accountable? What options do victims have in those situations?

JB: Victims may also have claims against the church or organization for negligence, particularly if there were prior complaints or warning signs about the abuser's behavior that were ignored. This could include claims for negligent hiring, retention, supervision, or failure to report the abuse to the proper authorities.

DM: That's a critical point. Can you elaborate on how victims can hold the church or organization accountable in these types of cases?

JB: Absolutely. Victims may be able to show that the church or organization knew or should have known about the abuser's actions, but failed to take appropriate steps to protect the vulnerable individuals in their care. This could involve uncovering a pattern of prior abuse, or demonstrating that the church had inadequate policies and procedures in place to prevent and respond to such incidents.

DM: This information is crucial for anyone who may have been affected by this horrific situation or similar cases of church abuse.

JB: I would encourage anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse by a pastor, staff member, or member of a Southern Baptist church or entity to reach out to an experienced clergy abuse attorney to discuss their legal options and seek the justice and accountability they deserve.

Ensuring Justice and Accountability for Church Sex Abuse

As this harrowing case continues to unfold, it is crucial that victims and their families know their rights and have access to the support and legal resources they need. John Bey emphasizes that anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse by a pastor or deacon should contact an experienced clergy abuse attorney for a free consultation and guide victims through the process of seeking justice and holding negligent organizations accountable. No one should have to suffer in silence. With the right legal advocacy, victims can find the path to healing and closure. Call today to begin your journey to justice.


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About the Author
Darla Medina
About Darla Medina
Editor: Darla is a content writer with a focus on the legal field. She covers cases of sexual abuse, drunk driving, and preventable violent crime for the Legal Herald. Contact Darla: This article was fact checked prior to publishing by this author to ensure compliance with our rigorous editorial standards. We will only use authoritative sources. Our values compel us to provide only trustworthy information. If you find an error, please contact us.
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