Third Criminal Case Expected Against Anti-Porn Activist Donny Pauling

Mar 22, 2015
Anti-Porn
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Anti-porn crusader and “Christian speaker” Donny Pauling, who is currently charged with 13 felonies and one misdemeanor alleging statutory rape of two underage girls in Shasta and Sutter counties, faces new criminal charges.

With the investigation into Pauling ongoing, Sutter County senior deputy district attorney Anu Chopra says she will be filing a third criminal case against Pauling in the coming weeks.

Pauling, who is currently in jail, was to appear in Sutter County Superior Court on March 13, but the two criminal cases against him were continued to April 10.

A former low-end producer of soft and hardcore images, Pauling became (in his own words) “a Christian speaker [who] shares his story and the truth about the dangers of porn to churches and universities around the country.” As an associate of Gail Dines and Shelley Lubben, he preached regularly about what the alleges are the detrimental impacts of pornography on girls and women, and families.

However the numerous criminal charges filed against him suggest that he may have been a serial molester all the while.

Third Criminal Case Expected Against Anti-Porn Activist Donny Pauling - Gail Dines and Donny Pauling in 2014

Gail Dines and Donny Pauling in 2014

Pauling was arrested Dec. 1 by the Sutter County Sheriff on three felony sex charges, including Unlawful Intercourse (Statutory Rape), after a 16-year-old female told law enforcement that Pauling had ongoing sexual contact with her for the past three years.

In an interview with journalist Meredith J. Graham, Ms. Chopra revealed that the 16-year-old was a relative who had been living with Pauling for several years.

“He was the caretaker of the child—they lived together in Shasta County, then moved to Yuba City [in 2012],” Chopra explained. During that time, she said, Pauling and the girl allegedly had a sexual relationship. She also alleged that he photographed the girl with other young girls in various poses.

According to detectives, the teen had first disclosed Pauling’s actions to both her mother and a friend Thanksgiving week. The Appeal-Democrat reports

She told detectives Pauling had told her that if she ever told officers about the relationship, she should tell him first so he could kill himself. She also said Pauling told her he wasn’t like other child molesters because he loved her.

Sutter County sheriff’s Detective Robert C. Brokenbrough, who has interviewed the teen three times since Nov. 30, testified that

Pauling first made inappropriate comments to the first victim about her lips and bottom. The comments turned into sexual acts, and Pauling first had sex with the girl in the summer of 2014. She said he used a condom until he had a vasectomy…. The girl told him that Pauling bought her lingerie — which detectives discovered in his bedroom — and photographed her in erotic and sexualized poses. She said Pauling uploaded the photos to Reddit.com Deputy District Attorney Anu Chopra submitted 10 photos of the girl into evidence. Some of the photos included the girl posing topless, exposing her bottom, and some included other minors.

According to Brokenbrough, the teen told authorities that Pauling had once video-recorded her in the shower, which she only realized after she discovered the hidden device. The detective also testified that there were additional witnesses.

He said a mother of a friend of the girl’s once saw a photo of the girl’s crotch on Pauling’s phone. And the girl’s ex-boyfriend disclosed that Pauling told him that Pauling had seen the girl’s vagina and urged the boy to date her.

A second indictment

On Dec. 17, Pauling claimed in a jailhouse interview that Sutter County Sheriff’s Captain Lewis McElfresh Jr. had urged him to have sex with another 16-year-old girl. Evidence of the second alleged victim was presented to Yuba City police by a man named Chase Hammonds. According to an officer’s declaration, Hammonds confronted McElfresh about the alleged incident, recorded the conversation and provided the recording to a Sutter County sheriff’s lieutenant.

On Dec. 18, the Appeal-Democrat reported, the Sutter County District Attorney charged McElfresh with five felonies: two counts of felony child molestation, willful child cruelty, burglary and misdemeanor charges of annoying or molesting a minor and indecent exposure. McElfresh is accused of masturbating while, allegedly, watching a minor being sexually violated by Pauling. McElfresh, is being held with bail set at $5 million.

According to statements made in open court on Jan 14, additional victims were identified in the criminal investigation of Pauling.

second criminal case was filed against Pauling on Jan. 28. According to the Appeal-Democrat

Chopra filed a nine-count criminal complaint naming Pauling in [connection with McElfresh]. The charges alleged four incidents of unlawful sex with a minor…. Investigators are in the process of interviewing eight minor girls as potential victims of Pauling, according to a declaration filed by Sutter County sheriff’s Lt. James Casner. Some of those girls live in Glenn and Butte counties. Chopra said she will ask for a bail enhancement for Pauling, which, if granted, would increase his bail from $500,000 to $1 million.

The new criminal complaint against the anti-pornography activist includes eight sex crime-related counts — including several instances of sexual intercourse; oral copulation and penetration with a foreign object on a minor — as well as one charge of first-degree burglary.

A hearing in the second case was also continued to April 10.

Chopra could not confirm reports about potential victims in Butte County at this time. 

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