Jason Greathouse, former Alabama youth pastor who was charged with raping a 14-year-old student, will not face jail time after reaching a plea deal with Coffee County prosecutors. Greathouse will serve two years of unsupervised probation and will not have to register as a sex offender.
Greathouse’s charges were downgraded from felony second-degree rape, which could carry a jail sentence of 20 years, to contributing to the delinquency of a minor, which is a misdemeanor.
Greathouse had married his victim at the urging of her parents after it was discovered that she was pregnant. (ChurchLeaders has chosen not to identify her by name in order to protect her privacy.) At the time of the rape in 2008, Greathouse was 24 years old.
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In 2008, Greathouse was the youth pastor of a church in Enterprise, Alabama, where he was living with the abuse survivor’s family. She was a student in Greathouse’s youth group. The victim shared with the Tennessee Holler that she was struggling with an eating disorder and that, at the time, she saw Greathouse as a mentor.
While Greathouse contends that their sexual relationship was consensual, it is a felony offense to have sex with a minor under 16. Further, the abuse survivor contends that Greathouse “took advantage of her innocence.”
The survivor reported that her parents did not take Greathouse’s sexual abuse seriously, saying that when she told her mother about her first sexual encounter with Greathouse, her mother simply asked, “How was it?” Citing her Christian upbringing, she felt the obligation to “make it right” by marrying Greathouse after losing her virginity to him.
The abuse survivor reported that she and Greathouse had a sexual relationship for a year and a half, which eventually led to her pregnancy and subsequently their marriage. The survivor reports that Greathouse left his youth pastor job after her pregnancy became obvious to others.
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Greathouse and the abuse survivor are now divorced. She recently told WTVY, “I should have never had to pay for a divorce at 16.” After the divorce, which was met with disapproval from her parents, she moved out of state to pursue an acting and musical career.