Tag: Jacksonville Sexual Abuse Attorney

Paul Dyal Horowitz Law

Jacksonville Pastor Paul Dyal Arrested For Alleged Sexual Abuse of Minors Over 4 Decades

Paul Dyal, a local Jacksonville pastor, was arrested on March 8, 2022, when services were harshly interrupted by a police raid at the Jacksonville Assembly of the Body of Christ where Dyal was leading. Dyal, 78, was charged with sexual battery and is concluded that Dyal committed both long-term sexual and physical abuse of minors from 1976 to 2001. Dyal’s arrest report also details physical abuse and states that the one victim had bruises all over her body from beatings. Dyal was denied bail.

According to the arrest affidavit, the investigation began in September 2020, after the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office received reports of multiple sexual battery and child abuse incidents involving victims affiliated with the Church. Several news reports revealed that multiple victims shared details of a cult-like atmosphere at the Church. During the preliminary investigation, it was discovered that on June 11, 2019, a demand letter was sent to the Church and on behalf of several victims who disclosed sexual, physical, and emotional abuse that occurred within the Church when they were minor children. Nobody from the Church responded. 

According to the reports, Paul Dyal, along with two other men, Jerome Teschendorf, 68, and Vernon Williamson, 85, would abuse minors together or individually. One victim claims Dyal sexually abused her up to thirty times over the span of seven years starting in March 1979. The alleged victim stated Dyal would bathe her in his house above the Church while Dyal’s wife and two kids were in the next room. The report said the victim “stated she never felt clean after the sexual abuse.” She was “happy when new girls would come to the church because she believed she would endure less sexual abuse.” The survivor explained, “We went into the Church around age 5. I was around 7 when he first decided to do what he did. My parents were sent out of town to another church, and I got put with him and his wife at his house. The first night I stayed there, he came in the bathroom during my bath and fondled my vagina with his hands and a belt buckle.” She said Dyal would masturbate while digitally penetrating her. She claimed this went on for about six years. The survivor said she filed a report in the late 90s and another report in 2003 claiming sexual molestation against Dyal, but again, nobody responded to until now. “Living with it and just knowing that all those years nobody would listen to me and he was free, and now he’s actually in jail, it’s numb, surreal but some kind of a little bit of closure.”

Another alleged victim, now 50, stated Dyal abused her from 5 to 14 years old. Another said she was 7 when Dyal sexually battered her. Dyal is now behind bars.

Sexual abuse by a member of the clergy is a breach of trust at the highest level. Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergies in Florida.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a Catholic priest or lay employee in Florida, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in Florida now have legal options, but statutes of limitations will apply so do not delay in contacting us now.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Florida and nationwide. Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Morgan McGee Horowitz Law

Jacksonville Massage Therapist Morgan McGee Surrenders License After Admitting Sexual Misconduct

Jacksonville massage therapist, Morgan McGee, surrendered his license to practice massage therapy in Florida, which was accepted and adjudged as a discipline on November 29, 2021, by the Board of Massage Therapy. Following a disciplinary action brought by the Florida Department of Health alleging sexual misconduct at Essentials Massage & Facials of Baymeadows, McGee agreed to cease practicing immediately and not re-apply for a massage therapist license in Florida. McGee has been a licensed massage therapist in Florida since 2016.

A Final Order of discipline was entered following an allegation of sexual misconduct made against McGee when working at Essentials Massage & Facials of Baymeadows, located at 9080 Golfside Dr., Jacksonville, FL 32256.  According to the Order, McGee self-reported that while performing a massage on a 35-year-old female client in June 2021, he groped her breasts, sucked on her nipples, and touched her vagina. McGee claimed that the encounter was consensual and that he paid for the massage. 

McGee’s personal Facebook page reveals a post from June 2021 stating, “It’s over gang. My Journey as A Manual Therapist is over. I am very sorry for letting all of you down.” It also lists his new business card as a Craniosacral Therapist.

The disciplinary order continues a long and disturbing trend of sexual misconduct by massage therapists statewide. Under Florida law, massage therapists occupy positions of trust, and all sexual activity between the massage therapist and clients is strictly prohibited. 

Morgan McGee violated the massage therapist-patient relationship. A massage therapist may not use his relationship with a client to induce or attempt to induce the patient to engage or to engage or attempt to engage the patient in sexual activity outside the scope of practice or the scope of generally accepted examination or treatment of the patient. 

Attorney Adam Horowitz has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims against massage therapists on behalf of clients who were inappropriately touched during a massage or spa service.  A massage therapist is never permitted to have sexual contact with a client.  If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery during a massage at Essentials Massage & Facials of Baymeadows or any other spa, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or e-mail sexual abuse lawyer, Adam Horowitz today.

Jacksonville Youth Pastor Jeff Bedwell Arrested on Child Sex Abuse Charge

Jeff Bedwell Horowitz LawFORMER YOUTH PASTOR ARRESTED FOR CHILD SEX ABUSE IN JACKSONVILLE

A former Jacksonville youth pastor is in jail and facing multiple felony charges. In early July 2021, former Chets Creek Church youth pastor, Jeff Bedwell, was arrested and accused of sexual battery on a little girl. Bedwell, age 38, was booked into the Duval County jail, where he was held on a $500,000 bond.

According to an arrest report from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, Jeff Bedwell worked at the Chets Creek Church on Hodges Boulevard. He and the alleged victim became close when he began grooming her as a 12-year-old girl. He sexually abused her two years later when she was 14, and continued throughout her teenage years.  The abuse allegedly included incidents of intercourse, oral sex, sexual touching, lewd text messages, and the exchange of graphic photos.

Bedwell is facing one count of unlawful sexual activity, one count of lewd and lascivious molestation of a minor between the age of 12 and 16, one count of lewd and lascivious sexual battery on a minor between the age of 12 and 16, and one count of transmitting harmful material to a child, according to Duval County jail records.

“Jeff Bedwell’s employment with the church was terminated more than two years ago for issues unrelated to the current charges now made against him,” according to a church official.  “Right now, our primary focus is to pray for any person who has been harmed and support them in any way they need,” the church said in a statement.    

Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims on behalf of children who were sexually abused by clergy and youth leaders of all religious denominations.  If you or someone you know was sexually abused by a clergy member of any religious faith, please contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com for a free consultation.

Bernard Torres massage Horowitz Law

Jacksonville’s Bernard Torres Surrenders Massage License Following Sexual Misconduct Complaint

Bernard Torres, a Jacksonville massage therapist, surrendered his license to practice massage therapy in Florida, which was accepted and adjudged as a discipline on May 14, 2021, by the Board of Massage Therapy. Following a disciplinary action brought by the Florida Department of Health Board of Massage Therapy alleging sexual misconduct at Hand & Stone Massage & Facial Spa, Torres agreed to cease practicing immediately and not re-apply for a massage therapist license in Florida. Bernard Torres had been a licensed massage therapist in Florida since 2005.

A Final Order of discipline was entered following an allegation of sexual misconduct made against Torres when he was working at Hand & Stone Massage & Facial Spa in Jacksonville, Florida.  According to the Department of Health’s Emergency Order, Torres was performing a massage on a 61-year-old female client on March 21, 2019.  While the patient was face-up, Torres moved the draping down to her hips exposing the client’s breasts without her consent. He then is alleged to have brushed his hands over the breasts several times and massaged her between the breasts.  The patient reported this activity to the managers of Hand and Stone as well as the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.  Prior to this alleged incident, Torres had been warned by Hand and Stone when a different female patient alleged that Torres exposed her breasts during a massage after numerous attempts to pull the draping up. An Emergency Order was entered in May 2019, which restricted his massage license to practice on male clients only. 

The disciplinary order continues a long and disturbing trend of sexual misconduct by massage therapists statewide, including numerous employees of Hand & Stone franchises. Under Florida law, massage therapists occupy positions of trust, and all sexual activity between the massage therapist and clients is strictly prohibited. 

Torres allegedly violated the massage therapist-patient relationship. A massage therapist may not use his relationship with a client to induce or attempt to induce the patient to engage or to engage or attempt to engage the patient in sexual activity outside the scope of practice or the scope of generally accepted examination or treatment of the patient. 

Attorney Adam Horowitz has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims against massage therapists on behalf of clients who were inappropriately touched at Hand & Stone Spa.  A massage therapist is never permitted to have sexual contact with a client.  If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery during a massage at Hand & Stone or any other spa, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com.

Lamon Bibbs Horowitz Law

FLORIDA DEPT OF HEALTH TAKES ACTION AGAINST JACKSONVILLE NURSE FOR SEXUAL MISCONDUCT

On February 11, 2021, the Florida Department of Health (FLDOH) issued an Order of Emergency Restriction of Lamon Bibbs license to practice as a licensed practical nurse (LPN) in the state of Florida following allegations of sexual misconduct. Bibbs was first licensed in Florida in 2014.

The alleged misconduct occurred while Bibbs was employed at All Care Home Nursing Services located at 6621 Southpoint Dr. N, Suite 120, Jacksonville, FL 32216.

According to the Florida Department of Health, on December 17, 2020, Mr. Bibbs was assigned home care for a disabled 4-year old in Jacksonville. During his shift, the patient’s mother allegedly heard strange sounds coming from the patient’s bedroom. The sounds were reported to be pornography. The mother then pulled up the video feed from the indoor camera in the patient’s room. She witnessed Mr. Bibb’s watching pornographic content on his cell phone while masturbating while the patient was in the room sleeping. The mother immediately went into the room, and Mr. Bibbs attempted to cover himself. She then asked him to leave.

Mr. Bibbs was questioned by All Care Home Nursing Services subsequently following the incident. Mr. Bibbs stated that he usually waited until the patient went to sleep before masturbating, admitting that he has done this multiple times before.

According to the order, the Surgeon General deemed Mr. Bibbs’ act of masturbating while on assignment and in the presence of a disabled minor and his admittance that this was not an isolated incident indicates that Mr. Bibbs is not able to meet the minimal standards of acceptable and prevailing nursing practices required of a nurse. The misconduct is a blatant violation of his patients, and he poses a danger to the health, safety, or welfare of the patient’s under his care.

It is rarely pleasant going to a doctor or seeing a nurse, but when we do, we should be able to feel confident they’ll help us to feel better, not violate us. Especially when it is in-home care and are inviting the healthcare professional into our homes. We seek out seasoned medical professionals who possess a good bedside manner, compassion and empathy. We believe the doctors and nurses at the office are carefully vetted, trustworthy and safe. It is unacceptable for any healthcare professional, including doctors or nurses, to touch a patient in any sexual manner or practice any sexual misconduct while on the job.

Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims against medical professionals on behalf of patients who were inappropriately touched in their care.  Under no circumstances is a doctor or nurse permitted to have sexual contact with a patient.  If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery at a medical office or facility, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com for a free consultation.

Diocese of St. Augustine Got Caught, But Is This Just Business As Usual For The Church?

At first glance, this blog may seem to be about the Diocese of St. Augustine. But we at Horowitz Law are convinced that the inexcusable patterns and practices outlined here – revealed by church and law enforcement records – are typical of many of the Catholic Dioceses in the United States – both in the past and present.

So if you have no particular knowledge of clergy sex crimes and cover-ups in Florida, we still think it’s worth your while to keep reading.  In fact, there’s so much awfulness in just one recent news report about the Diocese of St. Augustine hierarchy that it can’t be covered in just one blog post. So this is the first of two blogs on the subject

For starters, please read this short timeline.  Then tell us, if you can, how St. Augustine Bishop Felipe Estevez can sleep at night.

Fr. William Malone abused several girls in the 1980s.

In 1991, parents told church bosses that he hurt their 11 year old daughter.

In 1992, Malone impregnated a “young parishioner.”

That same year he was quietly moved out of state.

By 1993, his supervisors agreed to pay child support.

A decade later, the same abuse victim reported again, in person, to anew bishop.

By then, the diocese had a ‘review board’ tasked with investigating such reports.

But Bishop Victor Galeone and his top aides refused to tell the board.

 

In 2018, a victim reported, for the third time, that Fr. Malone repeatedly abused her.

This time, finally, the review board began to investigate.

But the Bishop and his staff and his board waited FIVE MONTHS to tell police.

And in 2019, finally, Bishop Estevez told his flock about Fr. Malone’s crimes.

Not surprisingly, then a “deluge” of others came forward disclosing abuse by Fr. Malone.

https://www.news4jax.com/i-team/2021/02/04/former-jacksonville-bishops-failed-to-report-sexual-abuse-allegations-records-show/

How can these decades of irresponsible inaction be excused? And who knows how many other girls Fr. Malone assaulted between 1991 and 2013, when he died? How many of those young victims might have been spared debilitating pain had any of dozens of top church staff simply called 911?

The cover up, in fact, started right away. When the 1991 abuse report was made, church officials deemed it as “conjecture” and “not credible” because parents, not the victimized youngster, met with diocesan staff. (Their daughter didn’t want to talk with diocese officials.)

And another Malone victim reported her abuse in — “but was told she needed to meet with a diocese attorney and staff BY HERSELF to discuss the allegations.”

Could they make things any harder on victims?

Remember, this information comes entirely from written diocesan records and a law enforcement agency about just one of the thirteen proven, admitted and credibly accused Diocese of St. Augustine child molesting clerics the diocese finally posted because of pressure from parishioners and prosecutors.

http://bishop-accountability.org/diocesan_lists/St_Augustine/2020_11_06_St_Augustine_Credibly_Accused.pdf

For more information on these predators, see BishopAccountability.org

And for more on the continuing cover ups in St. Augustine, read our next blog.

EMERGENCY RESTRICTION ORDER ON JACKSONVILLE CHIROPRACTOR’S LICENSE AMID SEXUAL MISCONDUCT ALLEGATIONS

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH ORDERS EMERGENCY RESTRICTION OF JACKSONVILLE CHIROPRACTOR’S LICENSE AMID SEXUAL MISCONDUCT ALLEGATIONS

In response to sexual misconduct allegations, on Tuesday, September 8, 2020, the Florida Department of Health ordered the emergency restriction of the license of Jacksonville chiropractor, Kenneth Zane Finger to practice in the State of Florida. The alleged abuse occurred at Finger’s practice, First Coast Chiropractic, located at 1550 Roberts Drive, in Jacksonville Beach.  

Back in December 2015, Finger was first placed on four years professional probation amid allegations he performed unwanted sex acts on a patient during a May 2014 appointment. As a condition of the settlement agreement, the Department of Health ordered that a chaperone must be present during examinations or treatments of female patients.

On March 5, 2020, Finger reportedly failed to have a chaperone present when he examined and treated a 20-year-old female patient. While laying on her back, undressed, with a sheet covering her, Finger allegedly performed acupuncture on the woman. According to the Order, Finger then had her turn over to lay on her stomach, exposing her right leg and buttocks. On multiple occasions throughout the appointment, Finger allegedly placed his erect penis in the patient’s hands. The patient removed her hand from his penis. She reportedly felt violated, embarrassed, and disgusted.

Finger’s alleged violation of the previous Dept. of Health Order demonstrates that the requirement of having a chaperone during appointments with female patients is not enough to protect the public. 

When patients schedule chiropractic appointments it is to feel better, improve bodily movement, manage pain and recover and heal from injuries or other medical conditions. They trust that doctors employed at the medical office are carefully vetted, professional and safe. It is both unacceptable and unlawful for any employee in the medical profession to touch a patient in a sexual manner. 

Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims against doctors on behalf of patients who were inappropriately touched at medical offices. If you have been a victim of sexual assault or sexual battery during a medical exam, or if you know someone who has, please contact our law firm at (888) 283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com for a free consultation.