Former pastor sentenced after Alford plea on molestation allegations

Washington Post

By Justin Jouvenal

The 30-year-old glared down from the witness stand at the former pastor accused of molesting him as a boy and demanded one thing: “I just want you to say you’re sorry — that’s it.”

The man he addressed, Tommy R. Shelton Jr., sat less than 10 feet away in a Fairfax County courtroom. Shelton, 66, stared past him in stony silence.

Stephanie L. Schwab, 26, who grew up in Manassas, was arraigned in federal court in Alexandria.

“You can pretend you didn’t do this, but you know you did,” said the man in the witness stand Friday. “Look at me.” And then, finally, their gazes met.

Soon after, Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Brett A. Kassabian sentenced Shelton to six years in prison on charges stemming from allegations of molestation from the mid-’90s, when Shelton was leader of the Community Church of God in Dunn Loring.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.