Convicted Felon Thomas Chantry Jailed; Indicted on Nine New Felony Counts!

By | September 14, 2018


“Those who are capable of tyranny are capable of perjury to sustain it.”
― Lysander Spooner

“In all the interviews I have done, I cannot remember one offender who did not admit privately to more victims than those for whom he had been caught. On the contrary, most offenders had been charged with and/or convicted of from one to three victims. In the interviews I have done, they have admitted to roughly 10 to 1,250 victims. What was truly frightening was that all the offenders had been reported before by children, and the reports had been ignored.”
― Anna Salter, Predators: Pedophiles, Rapists, And Other Sex Offenders

“At the defendant’s recent trial, defendant took the stand and boldly claimed that every single one of the 20 individuals who testified at the trial had lied about something. He literally denied every single thing of significance that every single witness testified to during the trial. Undersigned  counsel and Mr. Sears met with four of the jurors after trial, all of whom unanimously agreed that they did not believe anything that the Defendant said under oath during his testimony.”
Susan Eazer, Deputy County Attorney, “Verified Motion Pursuant to A.R.S. 13-3961(D) To Hold Defendant Without Bond and Request for Hearing.”  

Below is an email Karen Chantry sent out to her dwindling number of supporters. It is a futile attempt to keep the “true believers” convinced of Tom’s innocence and the Chantry’s great struggles to overcome hardships and the attacks of Satan.

Left unexpressed, of course, is any mention of the victims whom Tom beat the living daylights out of. Young, innocent, helpless children were abused sexually to satisfy Tom’s sick, twisted sexual cravings. Chantry’s  actions not only wreaked long-term havoc in the lives of his victims, it also has caused untold grief in their families.

Do you want to know who experienced attacks from Satan? It was the young children Tom assaulted. Chantry is, in my opinion, demonized. There is no other explanation for this wolf in sheep’s clothing. The man is deeply disturbing.

You want to know what else I found deeply disturbing? After one of the victims gave a gut-wrenching account on the witness stand of the horrific abuse he suffered at the hands of Chantry I walked out into the hall in a state of stunned silence. I was near tears as I pondered how a human could do such cruel things to another human. I would compare it to the same feeling I had as I walked out of the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. or the Yad Veshem Memorial in Jerusalem. As I stood in silence in the hallway outside the courtroom Karen Chantry and Judy Rogers (Tom’s sister) walked out of the courtroom and headed down the hall yukking it up and laughing!

But of course the Chantry clan continue to profess Tom is an innocent victim of persecution! These people and those who continue to support them and perpetuate their lies make me sick. Miller Valley Baptist Church elder Eric Owens stated from the witness stand that he did not believe Tom Chantry was a Christian. I agree with his assessment and I will take it a step further – I do not see how a God-fearing person can continue in a church pastored by a man who continues to support ARBCA.

Chantry Update by Karen Chantry 9-11-2018 by Todd Wilhelm on Scribd

Below is a photo of Thomas Chantry’s new accomodations. He gets to stay for free, courtesy of the Arizona taxpayers. His last minute airfare for he and the Mrs. from Illinois to Arizona was undoubtedly pricey, but I would imagine that, like everything else the last few years, father-in-law Al Huber footed the bill for the innocent, persecuted servant of the Lord. The poor guy probably isn’t living in as much comfort as when he was in John Sears’ guest house, and the fine dining has come to a screeching halt, but look on the bright side Tom, think of it as an enforced weight loss program!


Below is a letter by Bob Selph. I do not know the man. I have never met him. All I know is the good people of Miller Valley Baptist Church dearly loved the man who pastored their church for seventeen years. Elder Rich Howe’s daughter is married to Bob Selph’s son. I have two burning questions for Bob, and then I will let Brent Detwiler’s response to Selph speak further for me. First, how could Bob Selph not report the abuse that he was fully aware of to Prescott Law Enforcement? Second, when the Tom Chantry scandal had devastated the small body of believers at Miller Valley, and they were really left without any leader, how could Bob Selph not return for a week, or a month to offer some comfort and guidance?

Bob Selph’s Explanation… by on Scribd


All the ARBCA boys now seem to be running for cover. Brent Detwiler does a good job of confronting a few of them(i.e. Bob Selph, Tedd Tripp, Mike McKnight and Richard Jensen) with his letter below.

Brent Detwiler Letter to Selph, Tedd Tripp, McKnight and Jensen by Todd Wilhelm on Scribd


Below are the nine new criminal counts convicted felon Tom Chantry is charged with. I believe he is guilty on all counts. Were I in the jury pool I would have to disqualify myself from serving because there is no way I could be impartial. Since Charlie Daniel’s method of justice cannot be imposed I can only pray Chantry spends the rest of his life in free accomodation, courtesy of the Arizona taxpayers and the Corrections Department.

Thomas Chantry Arrest Warra… by on Scribd

I will warn you the document below is quite descriptive. Proceed at your own risk.

All I will say is the District Attorney’s office of Yavapai County, AZ made a strong case why convicted felon Thomas Chantry should not be freed on bail as he awaits trial, nor, in my opinion should he ever be a free man again.

Motion to Hold Chantry With… by on Scribd


121 thoughts on “Convicted Felon Thomas Chantry Jailed; Indicted on Nine New Felony Counts!

  1. Mitch Axsom

    Dear Todd,

    My name is Mitch Axsom and I am a lay elder in Clinton LA with Tom Hicks and Fred Malone. A member of our church sent me a post from your blog which indicated that I was at the trial. I was in New Mexico the first week of the trial and teaching math in Slaughter, LA the next two weeks. Maybe someone was there who looks like me. I would appreciate a retraction of the comment. Thank you for you kind help in this.

    I do not know how to get in touch with Brent Detwiler. He has two posts on his blog stating similar.

    Mitch Axsom

    1. JLC

      Todd will get back to you as soon as he’s able. I’ve removed your contact info from the blog, so that others won’t bother you. I will see that Brent Detwiler gets your message.

      Thanks. Janna L. Chan (blog team member)

    1. Van Helsing

      Hi Darrel,
      God bless you brother because your insightful comment hit me like a ton of bricks. Yes, “only the elect repent” or can glimpse their sinful pride and lack of humility to understand the necessity of repentance and of being restored. What does this say about TC, or Walter (the apex of all this) and ARBCA? They are simply worshiping themselves in the guise of worshiping the Lord – like papists who worship their CHURCH instead of almighty God.

  2. Douglas R Belardi

    Douglas R. Belardi

    In light of the following Scripture, and the failure of the Elders and Deacons of Heritage Baptist Church in Mansfield, the leadership of ARBCA (past and present) and IRBS to live lives “above reproach” I call upon all of them to resign their positions of Christian authority over their respective flocks since they have proven themselves to be mere “hirelings” and not shepherds at all

    1 Timothy 3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
    Overseers and Deacons
    3 It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. 2 An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. 4 He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity 5 (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?), 6 and not a new convert, so that he will not become conceited and fall into the condemnation incurred by the devil. 7 And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he will not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

    8 Deacons likewise must be men of dignity, not double-tongued, or addicted to much wine]or fond of sordid gain, 9 but holding to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 These men must also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons if they are beyond reproach. 11 Women must likewise be dignified, not malicious gossips, but temperate, faithful in all things. 12 Deacons must be husbands of only one wife, and good managers of their children and their own households. 13 For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a high standing and great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.

    14 I am writing these things to you, hoping to come to you before long; 15 but in case I am delayed, I write so that you will know how one ought to conduct himself in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.

    Titus 1:5-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
    Qualifications of Elders
    5 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you would set in order what remains and appoint elders in every city as I directed you, 6 namely, if any man is above reproach, the husband of one wife, having children who believe, not accused of dissipation or rebellion. 7 For the overseer must be above reproach as God’s steward, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not addicted to wine, not pugnacious, not fond of sordid gain, 8 but hospitable, loving what is good, sensible, just, devout, self-controlled, 9 holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict.

  3. Ole Ganny

    Could someone please answer this question? Have any of the pastors of HBC in Mansfield, Texas or any professors of the new seminary at HBC been involved with the coverup or possibly a big TC supporter? Also, are the pastors of HBC, Shreveport and the pastors of 1st Baptist Church, Clinton, Louisiana now staying quiet on this matter? Thank you

    1. Douglas R Belardi

      Larry Vincent (HBC) and Steve Martin (IRBS) fingerprints are all over the cover-up from 2000 forward as members of the AC and Walt Chantry’s friends

    2. Douglas R Belardi

      Steve Martin led his church into RBMS in 1990 and served on the Administrative Council, the Coordinator and Personnel Oversight Committee and the General Assembly Planning Committee. In November of 1996, he was instrumental in the formation of ARBCA and served on the Administrative Council for a decade, the GA Planning Committee, the RBMS/Foreign Missions Committee for a decade and was a Trustee of IRBS for a decade.
      Steve was also active in the formation of the Georgia Association of Confessional Baptist Churches which he led as Chairman of the Administration Council for several years. He began and headed up for thirteen years THE LOG COLLEGE, a training school for men preparing for the gospel ministry in Reformed and Baptist churches who could not afford to relocate to more established seminaries in other parts of the country.

    3. Douglas R Belardi

      Steve Martin is currently a member of Heritage Mansfield
      ARBCA’s Coordinator and IRBS Dean of Students

    4. Douglas R Belardi

      Today’s update is a reminder of what is involved in holding to and standing for the truth. At this time issues such as “fake news” and internet gossip (attack blogs) and plagiarism (stolen information passed off as one’s own) infect our culture. For decades, people checking out at grocery stores have been exposed to lurid magazines with lascivious gossip about all manner of people. How then can a Christian keep himself pure and unspotted from the world in such a corrosive environment? As always, God’s Word directs us to the right and narrow and true way. The Westminster Larger Catechism displays what it means to properly honor and obey the 9th Commandment–“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” It is included for your meditation and practice.

      Steve Martin
      ARBCA Coordinator

  4. Paul Schmidt

    ARBCA, like all other organizations formal or informal where a degree of power (to whatever magnitude) can be exerted over people and policies, is at its heart a bureaucracy. A maxim I coined in my previous career as a newspaper reporter and editor states, “Rule One of any bureaucracy is, ‘At all costs protect the bureaucracy.’ ”

    Exhibit A demonstrating this is the Catholic Church’s cover-up of its sexual abuse scandals. And of course Exhibit B for the purpose of my post is ARBCA. I’m not plowing new ground here; this blog and others have already made the startling parallels vividly clear.

    I would like to add, however, that one of Pastor Tom Lyon’s oft-repeated observations is, “All roads lead to Rome.” The irony is almost palpable when one considers that he and other men in ARBCA passed Tom Chantry around from one place to another, akin to a spare jack in a deck of cards. Hmm, where have we’ve seen that kind of activity before? That’s right, when predator Catholic priests were shuffled from one parish to another, while their crimes against children were covered up by the Roman Catholic bureaucracy.

    ‘Tis a dark subject for the Lord’s Day. So I will conclude with this: Rome has recently discovered a book is missing from The Vatican’s library. Would whomever at ARBCA please return Rome’s copy of “Coverups for Dummies”?

  5. chicmumma

    “Both of you should also be speaking out against the corrupt actions of the current Administrative Council. I’ve attached an excellent letter to them from Chris Marley, where he confronts their libel and duplicity. You should likewise confront them.”

    As a former member of a former ARBCA church whose former pastor is ON the Administrative Council, I would be VERY interested in reading this letter.
    My husband was a deacon and our good friend was an elder at our former church when this whole sordid affair came to light in early 2017. This came to our attention because a member of our church posted an article on Facebook, therefore prompting our pastor to become angry and try and shame him into removing it (he told him he would unfriend him if he didn’t take it down). We started researching all that we could and confronted the pastor ourselves. After multiple conversations and “meetings” with the elders and deacons, it was evident that he was into ARBCA and all its explanations hook line and sinker, and we’d get nowhere. We, both our families, felt we had no choice but to resign, and did so at the next adult Sunday school. We made sure to state facts first and foremost but did appeal to the heart of the matter as well, in that we all should want to do what was right for the sake of the children involved.
    As background for our strong stances for children, our daughter was sexually molested by a former babysitter’s son when she was 6 years old. When I was told by the babysitter that it had happened, and that she herself believed my daughter, I was of course heartbroken, but she understood and agreed that I should have no compunctions whatsoever about calling the police. I recall quite clearly sitting at my kitchen table with the State Policeman as he told me that approximately 5% of cases were proven to be false claims. He said our daughter did a very good thing in speaking up and that he believed her.
    Even with this background situation given as a reason to do what we could to stand up for these children in the multiple charges against TC, the firmness of the pastor to keep quiet, not say anything, believe him because he went to Dykstra and was assured that it was all false and nothing would come of it, was overwhelming. He, the pastor, even offered to fly Don Lindblad out to talk to us. Even then, not knowing the full extent of the involvement of Mr. Lindblad, we could tell that we weren’t going to hear anything to change our mind. We left in March of 2017. The church voted to leave ARBCA around the same time. The church voted and asked the pastor to step down, though he did ask that they not withdraw from ARBCA until after the GA that year so that he could still attend, even though he would now be attending another ARBCA church in the state. A few families left the church because of this vote. We are only still in contact and fellowship with less than a handful of families.
    I have been following this trial and cannot say thank you enough for all the hard work that this blog and others have put into gathering and sharing information. God Bless you all.

    1. 2samuel127 Post author

      Thanks for your comment, I am sorry to hear your daughter was molested, I am sure that has been tough on everyone and I pray you are all doing OK.

      Thanks for taking a strong stand against abuse. In spite of what ARBCA is now saying, it is clear they did all they could to cover up the sexual molestation and assualts committed by convicted felon Thomas Chantry.

      Don Lindblad proved himself to be a dishonest man in his deposition and again during the Chantry trial – the perfect choice for ARBCA to send out to other churches and attempt to convince them Chantry had done nothing wrong!

      You will find 5 letters from family members and a victim now posted on my newest blog article.

    2. Paul Schmidt

      Chicmumma, I am so sorry to hear of what happened to your daughter. I can empathize; a child from my first marriage was molested by a relative on my former wife’s side of the family after we’d divorced.

      What continually astounds me is how the men of ARBCA and their supporters cannot see and accept that Tom Chantry is a child abuser and that ARBCA attempted to shield him. The evidence makes this so blatantly apparent. To underscore what a reasonable person would have concluded by looking at the evidence, a fair trial has proven the matter beyond a reasonable doubt.

      Something we heard from the pulpit at PRBC is that men will not believe the evidence of the gospel unless God changes their hearts. Apparently, the same holds true for the men ARBCA concerning Tom Chantry and their culpability in protecting him.

  6. Brent Detwiler

    Regarding the Council & Reporting to Law Enforcement – Part 2

    Nine months after the investigation, Chantry was regularly preaching at Tom Lyon’s church in Tacoma, WA. Twelve months later, he was declared fit for a return to pastoral ministry by Lyon, Mark McCormick and Devon Berry, the CCEF counselor. Twenty months later, he was an elementary school teacher. And soon after he arrived, he started “spanking” children again. That was altogether predictable!

    This information comes from the Arlington Heights Police Department in Illinois where he taught school. They investigated Chantry for battery in 2004.

    “[The father] called 911 on 07-16-04 to report the following incident. His son, a student at Christian Liberty Academy, was the victim of a battery on 07-14-04. His teacher Chantry spanked [his son] with a wooden paddle, due to his behavior. [The father] indicated that he is aware of the school’s policy on punishment but was alarmed at the marks left on his son’s buttocks [two days later]. … His concern is that Chantry, a fifth and sixth grade teacher, disciplined his five-year old son. [The father] felt that [his son] was “paddled” too hard by Chantry.”

    “I [Detective Hamrick] asked Chantry how long he has been employed by the school and how often he “paddles” students. Chantry advised that he has been employed by the school for approximately two years. He has “paddled” students less than twelve times.”

    “Chantry then spanked him with a wooden paddle that was kept in his office. … The paddle is made of pine and is tan in color. The paddle is approximately 18” in length and approximately an inch thick.”

    Chantry “paddled” a five-year-old who was NOT one of his students. He was teaching 10-12-year olds. It appears he was the go to guy for paddling at Christian Liberty Academy. Just like he was at Miller Valley Baptist Church in a couple of cases. And of course, he had a ready-made paddle in his office that he used “less than twelve times.” Less than twelve times! How many children did that involve? And remember, nothing Chantry says can be accepted as true. The number could be higher.

    Susan Eazer, the attorney prosecuting Chantry today, noted the following from the witness who brought this information to the attention of Mr. Wilhelm.

    “He [the witness] indicated there should be reports from both agencies [Arlington Heights PD & the Depart. of Child Safety] regarding the incident and that Chantry was fired from the school as a result of the same. The individual also indicated that if one followed the “rabbit trail” similar instances and victims would be discovered at the churches that Chantry worked for following his stint in Arlington Heights.”

    Chantry was a member of Grace Reformed Baptist Church in Rockford, IL while teaching at Christian Liberty Academy in Arlington Heights, IL. Dale Smith and Al Huber (his father in law) were/are the pastors. They had to know Chantry was investigated and fired from the school.

    During the years he was teaching at Christian Liberty Academy, he was also helping with church plants and missions in ARBCA at the encouragement of Smith and Huber. In particular, he regularly traveled to Iowa and did “a lot of work” helping to start a new church.

    After he was fired from Christian Liberty Academy, Smith and Huber sent Chantry to regularly preach at Christ Reformed Baptist Church in Hales Corner, WI about an hour and 20 minutes away.

    This timeline comes from Chantry’s biography. I’ve added notes in brackets [ ].

    “Upon concluding his studies [1995], Tom moved to [Prescott] Arizona and worked in full-time ministry [at Miller Valley Baptist Church] for five years [1995-2000]. Subsequently he has been a member of Reformed Baptist churches in [Tacoma] Washington [Providence Reformed Baptist Church, 2000-2001] and Illinois [Grace Reformed Baptist Church, Rockford, IL, 2001-2006] and has spent four years [2001-2005] teaching at a Christian school [Christian Liberty Academy] in the Chicago area [Arlington Heights, IL]. Tom began preaching regularly at Christ Reformed Baptist Church in the summer of 2005. One year later [2006] he moved to the Milwaukee area [Hales Corner, WI] to begin preaching full time [at CRBC].”

    To summate. Nine months after the Council investigation in 2000, Chantry was back in ministry preaching thanks to Tom Lyon and Mark McCormick. That continued non-stop until the end of 2016 thanks to Dale Smith and Al Huber. Even after he was arrested in July 2016, he continued to preach at Christ Reformed Baptist Church until December 2016.

    There are reports Dale Smith now sees through Tom Chantry. He was at the July-August trial but did not sit on the Chantry side of the court. Nor did he interact with Chantry, his wife Karen; his sister, Judy; his fellow pastor, Al Huber; or Don Lindblad, David Dykstra and Mitch Axsom. I did not have the chance to introduce myself to him. He would arrive a little late and leave a little early. He did not interact with anyone.

    During the trial he sent this message to his church.

    Dear Church Family,

    We know that the internet bloggers are in high gear right now, and they are making many accusations against us, other pastors and our Association. If you have been reading their blogs (which we are not encouraging), we know that it must be raising questions and concerns with you. If they have indeed caused you any trouble or angst, please write down any concerns that have been raised in your minds. When we get back from Arizona we will be meeting with all of you very soon to try to answer every question you may have, and we will do so with openness, transparency and honesty. We are so sorry that you have to go through this. We ask that you please bear with us during this difficult time. Despite what is being said about us, we do not want to keep you in the dark, and we will not.

    Yours in Christ,
    Pastor Smith

    If not for “internet bloggers,” especially Todd Wilhelm at Thou Art the Man, no one in ARBCA, not even its pastors, would know the truth about Tom Chantry. Why? Because no one in ARBCA has been open, transparent or honest going back to the investigation in 2000. Especially not Dale Smith. He has enabled, defended and promoted for Chantry for the last 17 years. That continued even after he was arrested and all the police reports were public record.

    Smith has been keeping his church in the dark for a long time. I hope that is changing. If so, he will write a thank you note to Todd Wilhelm, fire Al Huber, state he believes the victims, expressed tremendous anguish for their harms, publicly confront Chantry for his crimes and sociopathic lying, call out the Chantry clan who still defend him, expose the corruption in ARBCA as evident in their recent report, and confess his protection of Chantry going back to 2000 and 2001 when he was on the Administrative Council. He has known about Chantry’s abuse of children for a long time.

    Few people in ARBCA are as guilty as Dale Smith, because few people have enabled, defended, promoted and protected Thomas Chantry like him! And yet, he proclaims himself a paragon of truth to his congregation. You can trust him but not those evil bloggers. I hope he repents and I believe he should resign as pastor.

    1. Roberto G

      Any updates on Dale Smith’s support or non-support of sicko Tom Chantry? Smith’s relationship to Al Huber? I wonder if Dale Smith’s health struggles over the years mitigates any of his past support/involvement with Chantry being used by Grace Ref Bapt Church to help other churches. Perhaps he was not always present or maybe he delegated a lot to Al Huber?

      1. 2samuel127 Post author

        I have not heard anything. I honestly do not expect to. If he repents and starts telling the truth I would expect a sign of this would be removing Al Huber from the ministry.

        1. Roberto G

          So, currently, Al and Dale are still co-elders at GRBC? The letter from him to the congregation did not mention other elders. When I was there to about 2003, there were 4 elders. Dale, Al, John, and Steve. John was sent to head up a church plant in the Chicagoland area. Dale was first among equals. I hope you are able to get updates from your sources.

      1. 2samuel127 Post author

        If you are referring to the Arlington Heights Police report, where Chantry beat a five year-old child, the parents did not want to pursue the case.

        ““Redacted” reminded me that she did not wish to pursue charges against Chantry. I asked that “Redacted” and her husband contact me if they have any questions or concerns in the future reference this incident.”

        Arlington Heights Police Department Investigation of Tom Chantry spanking a 5 year old at Christian Liberty Academy. Page 3 of report.

        1. Douglas R Belardi

          Doesn’t the State have an obligation to file charges in the child’s behalf irrespestive of the parent’s negligence?

          1. 2samuel127 Post author

            I am not sure how that works Douglas. Logically it would seem that the case would be very tough to prosecute if the family wants no part of it.

    2. "Joy"


      Can you remember where you found the information about Tom Chantry being fired from the school? Do you have information about why?

      As I understand it, TC taught at the school for 4 years: 2002-2006. The police report for the hard spanking was the dated 7/16/2004.

  7. Brent Detwiler

    Regarding the Council & Reporting to Law Enforcement

    There were three sets of written recommendations by Tedd Tripp, Mike McKnight and Rich Jensen in 2000. There is not a hint of a suggestion anyone should report Chantry’s crimes to law enforcement.

    Did they orally recommend to the families that they report? No. Here is the question I asked two of the three families that were at the heart of Council’s investigation in 2000.

    “Could you answer a question for me? Did Tripp, McKnight or Jensen ever suggest or encourage you to consider reporting Chantry to law enforcement back in 2000?”

    Here are their answers.

    “No they never suggested or even mentioned to us we should report to the authorities.”

    “I truthfully don’t remember them advising us on reporting. I have no recollection of that at all. I know it’s been a long time, but I’m sure I’d remember if they suggested that.”

    My notes and recollections from the trial are the same as Mr. Wilhelm. He said,

    “Two of the parents I talked with said the ARBCA men never mentioned anything about going to the police. In checking my notes, one father said, from the witness stand, that ARBCA assured him Chantry wouldn’t be working with children or be a pastor anymore. They went on to say that ARBCA would like to handle it as a church matter, but if they felt like they needed to go to police they could.”

    The three families were assured by the Council that Chantry would not be a pastor again, would not spank children again, and would not be around children alone again.

    Moreover, they were assured Chantry would fully repent and seek their forgiveness. Chantry agreed to Recommendation Eight in “Report, Conclusions and Recommendations.”

    “That Thomas Chantry endeavor to seek full repentance and the forgiveness from each of the four children and their parents who have been the subject of physical discipline by him. It is recommended that the Elders [Tom Lyon, Mark McCormick] who assume the oversight of Thomas Chantry assist him with this process.”

    Lyon and McCormick did not assist him in the process, and Chantry never endeavored to seek full repentance and forgiveness despite his agreement to do so as evidenced by his signature after this closing paragraph.

    “We the undersigned hereby agree to abide by and implement the above recommendations made by the Informal Council of the Associations of Reformed Baptist Churches of America.”

    This is another reason the parents did not report. They believed he would fully repent, be transformed, and return in contrition. None of that ever happened.

    The families have also said the Council strongly encouraged them not to report. They were advised to handle the charges against Chantry as a church matter, not a law enforcement matter. That is terrible counsel. By biblical command, it is both a church matter and a civil matter!

    That alone is a tremendous deterrent to reporting for people who have been indoctrinated to obey and follow their pastors with little or no questioning lest they be labeled proud and rebellious.

    The families also didn’t want to bring reproach to Christ or Miller Valley Baptist Church. One father was an elder, the other a deacon. That is a wrong way of thinking but they were trying to do what they thought was right.

    Finally, the Council met with the children in private. Some of the parents were never told all they discovered. And Tripp, McKnight and Jensen did not tell any of them they strongly suspected Chantry had punished their children for his wicked pleasure. Members from all three families told me at the July-August trial, they would have reported Chanty in 2000 had they been fully informed and told about the concern for sadistic beatings.

    In retrospect, all the parents profoundly regret the ways they did not believe their children and protect their children. They also deeply regret not reporting Chantry to law enforcement or Child Protective Services where they could have gotten help for their children. They realize they grievously sinned agsint their children. They still battle the condemnation of guilt.

    In contrast, no one on the Council or in ARBCA has ever acknowledged any mistakes, confessed any sin, or expressed any regret for the harm they caused the victims and their parents. That includes Tedd Tripp, Mike McKnight, Rich Jensen and Bob Selph.

    Moreover, the parents were instructed on “forgiving those who have not sought forgiveness” and made to feel terribly guilty by the Council. They were directed to focus on forgiving Chantry. That kind of unbiblical counsel often results in victims not reporting or prosecuting their abusers because they think it is an evidence of unforgiveness.

    I have seen this ungodly approach used by pastors time after time to prevent reporting and to silence victims. They think it is wrong to prosecute, or if they do, it is because of bitterness or resentment. The Council should have been focused on helping them prosecute Chantry and stayed personally involved in their lives. Instead, they disappeared after writing their reports on December 16, 2000.

    The families and the Miller Valley lay elders were trusting the experts – Tripp, McKnight, Jensen, Selph, and the Administrative Council – to do what was right and make certain Chantry never repeated his horrendous assaults upon children. The families viewed them as the professionals. One parent told me they were educated, we were not. They revered these men. Tragically, their trust was betrayed.

  8. Anon

    “Plagiarism charges are indeed true and lost Bob Selph his pastoral position in SC. Was caught using material easily found on the internet. It’s why he isn’t there any more. They get sorry for him this sponsor him.”

    Intended to say they felt sorry for him and thus sponsor him.

    All true.

  9. Anonymous

    I’ve just read the letter from the victim himself detailing the abuse. I feel so terrible that he had to endure that and that you can read the angst in his words that he trusted his parents to care for him and he doesn’t fell like they did by putting him a position to be abused. Doesn’t it raise any questions that they would call Chantry to come and spank the boys while they are at work? I know the parents would do it differently if they had the chance and report that to the police at the time but this is starting to create some confusion about their responsibility. Why on earth would they allow this man to spank their children, let the child spend the night with him after they know he spanks them, let them continue to be tutored and schooled by him with permission to spank them at school, and not listen to the child when he tried to tell them he was being abused? Abuse is never okay and this doesn’t excuse that for even one second but something is wrong here. This doesn’t sound like simply trusting in “authority” or letting your pastor do what he thinks is best, there is something more here to the story. Why wouldn’t they believe their child after seeing marks and bruises? Even the child just saying it’s happening should have made them listen.

  10. Deana Holmes

    Todd, thanks so much for getting the documents and pursuing this. I also thank the people who have posted here and provided background for understanding.

    Don’t Tom and Karen Chantry have children? Is there any concern these children were abused by their father?

    As a former lawyer, yes, a lawyer or prosecutor would look at the statute as it was written in 2000 AND the case law regarding the statute, if any. You need both.

  11. Ole Ganny

    “Woe to my worthless shepherd, who deserts the flock! May the sword strike his arm and his right eye! Let his arm be wholly withered, his right eye utterly blinded!”


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