A former youth pastor named Jason Greathouse who raped a 14-year-old girl and then married her after she got pregnant will not face jail time, following a plea deal with prosecutors.
Greathouse now lives in Tennessee, where he will serve two years of unsupervised probation and will not have to register as a sex offender. The Coffee County District Attorney’s Office reached a deal with Greathouse that downgrades his felony rape charge to contributing to the delinquency of a minor, which is a misdemeanor.
Greathouse was a pastor in Enterprise, Alabama, and was 24 years old at the time of the incident. In 2008, he was living with the family of his victim, who was in his youth group. While Greathouse stated their sexual relationship was “consensual,” it is a felony for an adult to have sex with a person under 16, and the victim now tells Coffee County Circuit Judge Jeff Kelley that her former youth pastor took advantage of her innocence.
But Coffee County District Attorney Tom Anderson said that “there were extenuating circumstances that would have been allowed to be presented by the defense that very likely could have resulted in a mistrial or even a not guilty [verdict] by jury nullification.” The crime occurred 13 years ago and the accusation comes on the heels of a custody dispute over the child, which prosecutors believed would hurt their case before a jury. “This case had extenuating circumstances and we felt like this (plea agreement) is in the best interest of all parties,” Anderson told News 4.
The victim, who has since divorced the former minister, is now an actress.