Trial of pastor charged with rape of child continues

After a year of hearings, continuances and court appearances, the trial of Malcolm Fraser began April 3 in King County Superior Court in Kent, Washington.

Fraser, the assistant pastor of Sound Doctrine Church in Enumclaw, Washington, was formally charged in March, 2012, with first-degree rape of a child.

John Fraser, assistant pastor of Sound Doctrine Church, charged with child rape.
The Enumclaw Courier-Herald writes that, according to prosecutor Jason Simmons, Fraser repeatedly raped and molested the girl over a period of several months. He stated Fraser told the girl if she told anyone about the assaults she and her mother “would go to hell.”

The paper reports:

The prosecutor said Fraser and Timothy Williams, who was leading Sound Doctrine at that time, told the family to put their children through a manners “boot camp.” Simmons said the girl would “be punished if she did not fold a napkin correctly.” He stated the children were not to speak unless spoken to and were to stand at attention when a man entered the home.

According to Simmons the parents were abiding by the church’s teachings and the girl was also following its rules.

“So when the defendant told her ‘you are going to burn in hell,’” Simmons said, “in this 11-year-old girl’s reality she believed it. The defendant, as associate pastor, when he said no one is going to believe you, she believed him because of the environment she was in.”

Simmons said because of the church’s rules and Fraser telling the mother, “You are not fit to raise your own children” the family left Sound Doctrine in 2006.

Fraser’s defense attorney, Ann Carey, notes there is a group of people who left Sound Doctrine, who dislike the group, and were gathering at the family’s home prior to charges being filed.

She specifically focused on ex-member Athena Dean, who have been a vocal online critic of the church.

Carey also told the court she would provide evidence the police investigation was biased against the church and that the interview of the alleged victim was not properly conducted.

According to the Courier-Herald

The split among Sound Doctrine members has been evident on Internet sites and social media posts. Dean and others have made no secret of their feelings about group.

Timothy Williams, when reached by phone in 2012, directed all questions to the Sound Doctrine website, Hard Truth. The site attacks the credibility of Dean and the girl’s family.

Williams publishes a website, enumclaw.com, and The Discerning Times, that presents their views of the case.

Sound Doctrine Church — Not Sound

Despite its name, Sound Doctrine Church is not sound in doctrine. Taking behavior into account as well, we consider the church to be a cult of Christianity. Sociologically there also is cause for concern.

In 2009 the small church was in the news in relation to a custody ruling involving a female member of the church.

The Temporary Custody RulingPDF file in the case shows that friends and family members of the woman and her estranged husband consider the church to be a cult.

From the information provided in that custody ruling it appears that term is used in the sociological sense of the word. [Note the difference between theological and sociological definitions of the term ‘cult.’]

Sound Doctrine Church pastor enters not guilty plea in rape charges

Religion News Blog — The assistant pastor of Sound Doctrine Church in Enumclaw, Washington, charged with two counts of first-degree rape of a child, has plead not guilty to both counts in King County Superior Court in Seattle.

Scottish newspaper The Herald says former Scott

Malcolm Fraser, 39, is said to have repeatedly attacked the girl while he and his wife were staying with her family.

He was arrested after the alleged victim, who is now 17, made a report to police in Enumclaw, Washington.

Former IT worker Fraser moved to the US 12 years ago and is the assistant pastor of Enumclaw’s South Sound Doctrine Church, which has had to fight claims from locals that it is a “cult“.

April Chan reports at Patch.com that

In addition to his duties with the church, Fraser was also listed as a staff member of WinePress Publishing in Enumclaw, which was where police arrested him.

Following his arraignment Thursday, Fraser, his supporters and Carey all declined to comment. However, Sound Doctrine Church on its website issued a statement of support for Fraser that was dated March 28: “Malcolm has been a member of Sound Doctrine Church for over 10 years and is a loved and valued member of our leadership team. He has shown nothing but the utmost of Christian love and devotion to his ministry, his work, his community, his marriage, and extended church family.”

Athena Dean, former owner of WinePress Publishing, was in attendance and offered that the alleged victim is the daughter of a close friend and the allegations came about as the girl was undergoing counseling.

The girl’s family had been a part of Sound Doctrine Church at the time Fraser and his wife stayed with them but they have not been church members for about seven years, Dean said.

Athena Dean, the woman who started WinePress Publishing and helped start Sound Doctrine Church, tells her story of the 12 years she spent with the church in her blog, Not Afraid To Tell My Story: “One Woman’s Searingly Honest Blog About Breaking Free from Deception.”

In 2009 Sound Doctrine Church was in the news in relation to a custody ruling involving a female member of the church.

The Temporary Custody RulingPDF file in the case shows that friends and family members of the woman and her estranged husband consider the church to be a cult.

The beliefs promoted by Sound Doctrine Church include many unbiblical teachings and, taking practices into account as well the church can be considered to be, theologically, a cult of Christianity.

Note the difference between sociological and theological definitions of the term ‘cult.’

Research resources on Sound Doctrine Church
Sound Doctrine Church/WinePress Publishing – Malcolm John Fraser charged – 1st degree rape of a child (Includes comments by current and former members of Sound Doctrine Church)

Sound Doctrine ‘cult’ factored in judge’s home school ruling

Sound Doctrine church cult ruling In a case that’s gaining national attention, a Wake County judge ruled Tuesday that a woman must share custody of her three children with her estranged husband and can no longer home school them.

Advocates of homeschooling have characterized the case as a challenge to parent’s rights to home school their children, but court documents released Tuesday show the woman’s family is concerned about her relationship with a small Washington State based church that critics characterize as a cult.

Magnum’s ruling quotes people named as former members of Sound Doctrine who describe the institution as abusive. They say Sound Doctrine practiced brainwashing and was run by fear and manipulation. [Read more...]