Minister, ex- psychologist & ex-radio host sued
- Minister, ex- psychologist & ex-radio host sued
- He exploited vulnerable woman, lawsuit says
- State stripped him of his psychologist license
- He also worked for Cardinals & Seattle Mariners
- Church is “using legal technicalities,” SNAP says
- Group urges others who were hurt to “speak up”
Holding signs and a photo of an alleged offender at a sidewalk news conference, clergy sex abuse victims will
-- discuss a previously-undisclosed sexual exploitation lawsuit against a minister, ex- psychologist, ex-St. Louis Cardinals consultant and ex-KMOX radio talk show host,
-- urge a judge to let the case proceed, and
-- prod anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered the man’s misdeeds to speak up, expose wrongdoing, and protect others.
TODAY, Friday, April 27, at 1 p.m.
2-4 members of a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org)
Outside the NE corner of the St. Louis County courthouse, 7900 Carondelet (corner of Central) in downtown Clayton
Bill L. Little (a.k.a. Billy Lee Little) is a minister. He’s also a former psychologist, radio talk show host and ex-St. Louis Cardinals employee. In an amended lawsuit filed late last month, he is being sued (for at least the second time) for inappropriate sexual misconduct against a woman he was counseling.
For 17 years, Little had a counseling show on KMOX and reportedly “became the first sports psychologist employed by a major league baseball team when he worked for the St. Louis Cardinals (1978-1982).” For 50 years, he headed Christ Memorial Baptist Church in Cool Valley (which dissolved in 2010).
According to the complaint, Little became the marriage counselor for Darrell and Rhonda Pitt in 1983. After several sessions, he told the couple that Rhonda required special solo counseling sessions, which she attended for a few years. During these sessions, Little used his position of authority to exploit and coerce Rhonda into sexual contact. Later, the suit says, Little demanded silence from Rhonda. In 2010, she got counseling from another professional who urged her to report Little’s manipulation and misdeeds. She told her husband that same year.
When Darrel confronted Little about his misdeeds, Little mocked him and derided his wife. Later, Little took to the pulpit at Christ Memorial and derided Darrell publicly. The couple is suing Little for negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress, breach of fiduciary duty, and defamation. They are also suing Christ Memorial for intentional failure to supervise Little.
Ironically, Little has written an advice book for families called “Get it Together Before it Is Too Late.”
Little has faced at least one similar suit in the 1990s. It was settled out of court. The victim was represented by Gerald Greiman (333-3901, [email protected]).
In 1996, Missouri officials revoked Little’s license to practice psychology for one year due to an inappropriate relationship with a patient, and also for performing treatments for which he was not licensed.
At a hearing in Clayton on Monday, church officials and Little will urge a judge to toss out the case. At the same hearing, the Pitts’ will urge a judge to force church officials to turn over records about Little’s work there.
SNAP is hoping the judge will allow the case to proceed and is urging anyone who may have seen, suspected or suffered wrongdoing by Little - in any of his jobs or roles - to contact the police or their group.
The couple represented by Ken Chackes of Clayton (872 8420, 369 3902 cell). Little (who lives in St. Charles County with his third wife) is represented by Aaron Staebell (636-272-3606, [email protected]). The church is represented by Cynthia S. Holmes (721-7010, [email protected]). The suit was filed in December of 2011. The hearing on Monday will be in Division 12 in St. Louis County before Judge Steven Goldman.