Pastor Charged with Felonies

By Sarah Elmquist
Winona Post

August 6, 2008

Winona clergy member faces criminal sexual conduct charges

A former Winona pastor facing ten felony charges alleging criminal sexual conduct appeared in court Tuesday, affirming a not guilty plea but agreeing to participate in a settlement conference.

Rev. Donald Dean Budd, 64, has been accused of engaging in criminal sexual conduct with an adult woman between 2003 and 2005. Of the ten felony charges, five are third degree with a maximum penalty of fifteen years in prison and a $30,000 fine, and five are fourth degree with a maximum penalty of ten years in prison and a $20,000 fine.

The female victim, according to the complaint, was seeking spiritual guidance and counseling from Budd when the alleged conduct took place. Two of the incidents allegedly took place at the victim’s residence, six allegedly occurred in Budd’s parsonage, and two were allegedly to have occurred in the church building.

The charges allege that Budd engaged in “sexual contact [or sexual penetration] of another person, while purporting to be a member of the clergy, during a period of time in which the person was meeting [the defendant] on an ongoing basis to seek or receive religious or spiritual advice, aid, or comfort in private,” according to a statement issued by County Attorney Chuck MacLean about the charges. Within these subdivisions, consent is not considered a defense to prosecutors.

The settlement conference was set for September 24.


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.