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Pastor gets 20 years for rape

Published:Thursday | December 10, 2015 | 12:00 AMBarbara Gayle

A PASTOR who raped a 15-year-old schoolgirl at a church in May Pen, Clarendon, in April 2012, was yesterday sentenced to 20 years' imprisonment.

Oraine Ellis, 32, was convicted in the Clarendon Circuit Court last month by a seven-member jury. Sentencing was put off until yesterday in the Home Circuit Court.

Ellis has one previous conviction for carnal abuse. He pleaded guilty in 2007 to that offence, and was sentenced to four years' imprisonment.

The Crown, represented by Kelli-Ann Boyne, Crown counsel, led evidence that the girl went to church one Sunday in April 2012, to get some solace.

Ellis prayed for her and the girl said she felt saved and safe.

The complainant testified that the next day, Ellis called her and she went to the church. She said Ellis raped her inside the church. The girl, who was left distraught by the ordeal, reported the matter to a neighbour.

Citizens in the community were informed of the sexual attack on the girl. The citizens went to the church and held the pastor until the police came for him.

In an unsworn statement from the dock, Ellis said the girl called him on the day of the incident. She came to the church, but he did not have any sexual contact with her.

Ellis spent one year and two months in custody before he was granted bail.

Justice Nicole Simmons, in passing sentence, said she took into account the fact that the minimum sentence for such an offence was 15 years. She said Ellis did not learn from the four years he spent in prison for carnal abuse.

The judge told Ellis that he breached the trust the complainant had in him. Therefore, she had to give him a stiff prison sentence to reflect that breach of trust.