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Saturday, September 16, 2006                                                                                       View Comments

Pastor convicted of having sex with children

A Columbus, Ohio pastor was found guilty of three sex charges with children Friday in Franklin County Common Pleas Court, and may learn his sentence on Monday.

The Rev. Maurice L. Jackson, pastor of New Generation Church, 1173 Essex Ave., had been accused of having sexual contact about nine years ago with a girl who then was 7 or 8 and engaging in sex about eight years ago with a relative who then was about 14. Jackson was 22 when the latter offense was said to have occurred.

After about 12 hours of deliberation over two days, a seven-woman, five-man jury returned guilty verdicts on two counts of gross sexual imposition and one count of corruption of a minor. Jackson could face up to 11 ½ years for the convictions.

Duty Judge Richard S. Sheward revoked Jackson's bond and placed him in jail until Monday, when trial Judge Charles A. Schneider returns to decide when to sentence Jackson.

The defense said the charges had been built on “lies and revenge” because Jackson had removed the older girl from the church's praise team.