Victims applaud minister's sentence but urge more action
For immediate release: Monday, Aug. 24
We’re grateful that Rev. Gregory Ivan Hawkins has gotten a tough sentence. Now, however, others at Zion Plaza Church and Zion Child Care& Learning Center must launch an aggressive outreach campaign to find and help others who are in pain because of Rev. Hawkins’ crimes.
Too often, when law enforcement pursues a child molesting cleric, his supervisors, colleagues and church members stay silent. That’s wrong. They have a moral and civic duty to aggressively seek out others who may have seen, suspected or suffered the minister’s crimes. They must urge these victims, witnesses and whistleblowers to step forward, get help, expose wrongdoing, protect others and start healing.
Only a fool would believe that this brave 15 year old girl is Rev. Hawkins’ first and only victim. And only timid, self-serving church members and staff would sit passively by and let others who were hurt by Rev. Hawkins suffer in shame, isolation, confusion and despair.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
Contact - David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, email@example.com, SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Barbara Dorris (314-503-0003 cell, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tulsa pastor receives seven life sentences for sexually abusing girl
Posted: Monday, August 24, 2015 12:00 pm
By ARIANNA PICKARD World Staff Writer | 6 comments
A Tulsa minister was sentenced Monday to seven concurrent life terms in prison for sexually abusing and impregnating a 15-year-old girl.
Gregory Ivan Hawkins, 56, was sentenced in Tulsa County District Court by Judge James Caputo.
Hawkins was charged with seven counts of child sex abuse in Tulsa County in 2013 and pleaded guilty to two of the counts and no contest to the others on June 15.
A 15-year-old girl told Tulsa police that . . .
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.