Thursday, December 01, 2005


Pastor arrested in second rape case

Syracuse, New York - A Syracuse pastor is back in jail after being charged with rape for the second time.

Jaree Jones, 30, of 148 Camp Ave., is accused of raping a teenage girl in Connecticut in 2000. He is to be arraigned today in Syracuse City Court.

Jones, pastor of the Refuge Temple of Syracuse, on South Avenue, was charged Wednesday with two felonies - sexual assault and risk of injury to a minor - based on a warrant out of Waterbury, Conn.

He had been charged Nov. 9 with second-degree rape and second-degree criminal sexual act after a 15-year-old Syracuse girl told police he raped her. The girl said Jones assaulted her several times between May 2004 and March 2005 at his home and church, where the girl's family attends services.

Syracuse police Sgt. Tom Connellan said a second victim came forward this week after seeing reports of Jones' arrest on the Internet. Shortly after the alleged rape, in 2000, the girl reported it to police and a warrant was issued for Jones' arrest. She was younger than 16 at the time. She called police again this week after seeing stories about Jones' Syracuse arrest.

"The victim had done some type of Internet search on Jones' name, saw that he had been arrested and contacted Waterbury police," Connellan said.

Waterbury police contacted Syracuse police, who arrested Jones at his home.

Connellan said the Connecticut warrant against Jones had been pending for several years, but police there never entered it into a national computer system. That's why Syracuse police found no record of it when they first arrested Jones.

See also, the never-ending chronicle of church-related crime.

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