SEXUAL EXPLOITATION: Former Pastor Sentenced
The former Pella pastor was sentenced Friday for sexually abusing four members of his congregation.
We are not identifying the victims in this case.
To a packed court room, 42-year old Patrick Edouard sat silently and listened to each of the four victims speak..
“Edouard violated me emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually,” says one victim.
In August a jury found Edouard guilty of four counts of sexual exploitation by a therapist or counselor and one count of a pattern of sexual exploitation.
Edouards accusers say he took advantage of their time in counseling on personal issues.
“He misused his position of authority, I hate the right to expect Edouard to honor the boundaries given to him in his professional contract instead he felt privileged and empowered to seek and indulge himself into my life,” says one victim.
Edouard claims he wasn’t counseling any of the women and that all the relationships were consensual.
He took a few minutes to address the judge and the church members who have stood by his side.
“I have deep profound profuse apology to you to this court, to the people sitting behind me who knew me as a different person,” says Edouard.
The judge sentenced Edouard to 5 years in prison; he will also have to register as a sex offender.
One victim says although it was hard to speak out, she hopes it made a difference.
“As an abused woman it was painful to re-tell my story, but if it would stop him from hurting one more woman it was worth it,” says one of the victims.
While the jury did find Edouard guilty of five counts, they found him *not guilty of three counts of sexual abuse.
The judge also issued no contact orders for all four victims and their families for the next five years.