Allegations of Sex Abuse by a Sister Missionary Against Her Former Patriarch
Some time prior to July 11, 2016, a sister missionary for the Mormon Church asked her Mission President for permission to receive a new patriarchal blessing. She reported that the man who administered her original blessing had sexually abused her approximately seven years prior. At the time of the accusation, the alleged perpetrator was a Temple President and had served as a Mission President prior to his calling as a Patriarch.
The accuser’s Mission President informed his superiors of the allegations. Randy Austin, lead outside controversy and crisis counselor for the Church, was made aware of the situation and sent an email to Lance Wickman, General Counsel for the Church, and Kent Richards, Executive Director of the Temple Department. Kent Richards forwarded that email to Brook Hales, the secretary to the First Presidency at the time. The email sought permission to have the alleged perpetrator’s leaders interview him and start an investigation. The email chain can been seen here. *Note: the email chain contains three emails with the most recent emails appearing at the top
On July 13, 2016, the alleged perpetrator and his wife met with the First Counselor of the Area Presidency. The counselor’s report of this interview can be read here.
On July 19, 2016, the Area President and the First Counselor conducted a second interview. A report of that interview was sent to Kent Richards on July 20, 2016. The email summarizing this interview can be read here.
Requests for Comment
Several of the Mormon leaders involved in the investigation and Church Spokesperson, Eric Hawkins, were contacted for comment. No response has been received.
The name of the alleged perpetrator, the accuser, the two General Authorities conducting the interviews, and all locations have been redacted in an effort to protect the identity of the survivor. Redactions are color coordinated as follows:
* The alleged abuse happened in the United States.
Content Warning and Resources
The content of this document may be particularly triggering or traumatizing to individuals who have experienced abuse previously. Below are a list of resources that can be utilized in the United States. If you are not a resident of the US, we encourage you to search for resources near you.