Minn Ex-Church Leader Pleads Guilty To Sex Assault

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A former youth leader at a Maplewood church has pleaded guilty to molesting a White Bear Lake teen in the 1990s.

Sixty-five-year-old Gary Odell Weldon of White Bear Lake was charged with second-degree criminal sexual conduct.

In exchange for Weldon’s guilty plea Friday, prosecutors agreed to recommend a sentence of four months in jail.

The criminal complaint says Weldon was a youth leader at First Evangelical Free Church for 15 to 20 years.

Weldon told prosecutors he abused the victim at a Wisconsin cabin between 1992 and 1996, starting when the boy was 13. He acknowledged putting his hands in the boy’s pants and touching his private parts “approximately a dozen times.”

A St. Paul Pioneer Press report says sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 1.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Ian Towne

    A four month penalty for sexually assulting a minor is pathotic. If he did it to one child I’m sure many more will surface. I am outradged that the courts agreed to only a four month sentence. With low punishment rates like this I’m sure we will see much more of this happening. Derminate castration should be his punishment. What in the H–L were these procecutors and judges thinking.THIS IS OUTRAGEOUS!

    • B in MPLS

      Ian, I hate to say it, but the government is cash-strapped and taking this to trial would have cost a large sum of money. That, coupled with the obvious lack of evidence (the #1 reason for a “light” plea) means that the prosecutors felt the 100% chance of a 4-month sentence is better than spending a lot of money on a 50/50 shot at a longer one. Solid convictions require evidence and you can’t get evidence 10-20 years after the crime occurred unless it is in the forms of multiple witnesses testifying. Not to sound cold, but this is what happens when abuse either isn’t reported right away, or is ignored by the person it is reported to.

      But you do have a good point that if he is a “career” criminal, other, more recent incidents will surface that can be prosecuted for a longer sentence.

  • Busting Fingers up North

    and he was so casual about admitting that he was ” putting his hands in the boy’s pants and touching his private parts “approximately a dozen times.”

    Like it was a natural thing to do.
    What a pig.
    I’d be busting fingers

  • TL the alligator

    …so where is his picture?….nice job editors.

  • lee


  • Bob

    Take him handcuffed out in to the woods, nail his private parts to a stump and then light the stuump on fire. Remove the handcuffs and hand him a dull knife. Bet he won’t do it again.

  • jum

    John 8:7 … he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone …

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