“A Gresham pastor has been convicted of sexually abusing a former family member.
The Deschutes County jury found former Bend resident Jamie Worley guilty of seven felonies in a case that involves abuse that took place between 2002 and 2004. The jury was unable to reach a verdict on eight other counts.
The Bulletin newspaper reports Wednesday’s verdict shocked Worley and the family and friends who packed the courtroom. A jury in an earlier, related case in Tillamook County had found Worley not guilty on several charges, and deadlocked on others.
“Why?” a red-faced and tearful Worley asked himself repeatedly after the verdict was read. Meanwhile, his distraught mother wagged her finger at the judge and was found in contempt of court.”
“An evangelical pastor and former police officer is facing more than 30 charges of sex crimes involving two children, one boy and one girl.
James Daniel Worley, 42, has been a senior pastor at Powell Valley Church in Gresham since 2012, according to the church’s website.
The indictment filed Dec. 16 in Deschutes County charges Worley with 37 counts, including two counts of rape, 20 counts of sexual abuse, 11 counts of sodomy, one count of attempted sodomy and three counts of using a child in a display of sexually explicit conduct.
In the latter three counts, the documents state Worley “did unlawfully and knowingly induce (the victims) … to engage in sexually explicit conduct for a person to observe.”
According to the indictment, the alleged abuse occurred between Sept. 1, 2002 and June 30, 2004 while the children were under the ages of 14 and 12.
Deschutes County prosecutors would not reveal how Worley knew the alleged victims but did say they did not believe Worley was a pastor during the time of the alleged incidents. However, prosecutors told KATU they are concerned there are more victims.
Worley was booked into the Multnomah County Jail on Dec. 30, and on that day he posted a tweet that reads, “Stormy weather has arrived. About to find out two-things: who our real friends are and how our God glorifies himself. #Psalm35 #GlorytoGod.”
Worley is active on social media as well as his blog, called Pastor Jamie’s Blog, where he spreads the message of Jesus and offers advice on how to lead better, more spiritual lives.
In one blog post he writes:
What kind of witness for Christ are you? Are you an effective one? Here’s a better question, do you feel that you share the love of Jesus for the world with the world in a valuable way? I’m going to go out on a limb, using only my personal experience in conversations with believers of all ages and maturities, and say that you’re either thinking, “no, not really.”
According to biography on the blog, Worley is married with four kids and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Mississippi as well as a Master of Arts in Pastoral Studies from Multnomah Biblical Seminary in Portland, Oregon.
He writes that his favorite book is the Bible and that his passion is to “spend my life seeking the lost and equipping the found, all for God’s glory.”
The On Your Side Investigators went to Powell Valley church on Monday, but it was closed. Messages were not returned Monday.
Worley’s family declined to speak to a KATU reporter on Monday.
“It’s really devastating,” said Lily Prosch, a former member of the church. “Pastors are trusted individuals so why would you think to second guess a person like that?”
Prosch’s mother used to be a secretary at the church and she said her son still attends youth group there.
Prosch believed Worley also led prayer groups for youth at Sam Barlow High School in Gresham.
“That scares me,” Prosch said. “My son is a student at that school and I would hate to think that (Worley) would have any further access to my child.”
KATU left several messages for the Gresham-Barlow School District Monday. Messages were not immediately returned.
“If there is anybody else out there that was hurt by this man, please feel free to come forward and stand up for yourself and what happened, and say this isn’t right, and I’m not going to allow this to happen,” Prosch said.
Officer Worley: His “conduct was not a good faith error”
The On Your Side Investigators uncovered Worley used to be a police officer with the Tillamook Police Department.
He worked at the department from Sept. 1, 2005 to November 3, 2006 but his badge was revoked in 2007 for ongoing misconduct, according to City of Tillamook records obtained by the On Your Side Investigators.
“After considering the totality of circumstances, it appears that Worley violated agency policy, and was untruthful or deceptive on more than one occasion,” according to 2007 police review board meeting minutes.
The document states Worley engaged in “unethical writing of citations,” inappropriately responded to a restraining order, destroyed marijuana in the field, used the Internet excessively while on duty, created “sexually explicit advertisements,” and made unwanted sexual advances to a woman in a 911 dispatch center, among other things.
Worley went to the 911 center, which was against policy, and told a female dispatcher that he would “service her,” according to the police review board.
The dispatcher stated Worley came to the 911 center several times between June and November 2006. In part, the document states:
“Initially the conversations were friendly however between the months of August or September and November, Worley began to engage in sexual conversations with her. Examples of these conversations were when Worley offered to “service her” and she understood he meant this in a sexual manner because he would make reference to each of their genitalia in their conversations. Also, Worley told the female dispatcher he would please her as no man has pleased her. The female dispatcher understood that Worley meant this in a sexual manner because he would reference his male prowess.”
In her Affidavit, the female dispatcher stated that she would brush Worley off and change the subject. Also, at one point Worley apologized to her and discontinued his inappropriate behavior. The female dispatcher stated that she did not report this but other dispatchers who witnessed Worley’s behavior did share their concerns with other officers and perhaps supervisory staff.
In the meeting minutes, Worley asserts that he was “let go” without any explanation and that he had never been counseled or disciplined for any serious reason by the department.
He added that he was poorly trained and not approached or redirected in any way by the employer. Worley also stated that he never purposefully compromised his integrity and character on duty.
Worley is in jail on $500,000 bond.
Unless he posts bail, the Deschutes County District Attorney’s office expects Worley to be transported back to Bend to face charges.”