February 19, 2005

Baker pastor pleads to molesting boys

The Advocate

Advocate staff writer

A Baker minister admitted in court Friday he had sexual relations with boys.
The Rev. Bennie McFarland, 42, of Hightime Evangelistic Center was on trial for nine counts that involved sexual acts with young boys dating back to the mid-1980s.

McFarland, with his attorneys, Robert Glass of New Orleans and Robert Randolph of Baton Rouge, reached a plea agreement with prosecutor Barry Fontenot of the East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney's Office on Friday, the fifth day of trial.

McFarland pleaded to one count of molestation of a juvenile and two counts of aggravated crime against nature. Each count carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.

Each is a felony, and aggravated crime against nature is considered a violent crime, state District Judge Todd Hernandez said in court.

Posted by kshaw at February 19, 2005 07:00 AM