March 03, 2006

Preacher says he didnít abuse boys

FORT WORTH (TX)
Fort Worth Star-Telegram

By MARTHA DELLER
STAR-TELEGRAM STAFF WRITER

FORT WORTH - For nearly two hours Wednesday, former Baptist preacher Larry Nuell Neathery repeatedly and emphatically denied sexually abusing five boys, accusing each of his young accusers of lying about multiple allegations during his felony trial in Tarrant County Criminal District Court No. 4.
"I promise to God, and Iíll put my hand on the Bible," Neathery said, "I did not touch those children or any children in my entire life. To me, itís one of the most heinous crimes a person could do."
Neathery later said a convicted child molester should be put to death, which is not an option in Texas. He could face up to life in prison if convicted of aggravated sexual assault. He also is charged with indecency with a child and sexual performance of a child, which carry lesser prison terms, but is eligible for probation.
Under questioning by his attorney, Leon Haley, the 56-year-old former pastor of Westside Victory Baptist Church, specifically denied committing a variety of sexual acts with each victim, including three of his grandsons and two neighbors. The boys ranged in age from 5 to 14 when the alleged acts occurred between 1998 and 2004.

Posted by kshaw at March 3, 2006 04:37 PM