champ

SCURRY, Texas — A Kaufman County Mennonite church leader has been sentenced to life in prison following his conviction for continuous sexual assault of a child under the age of 14 in Kaufman County, according to District Attorney Erleigh Wiley.

Prosecutors say 51-year-old Stanley Gerald Champ of Scurry, Texas, led the Grays Prairie Mennonite Church in the 12000 block of Farm-to-Market (FM) 148 where he met his latest victim — a four-year-old girl.

Yesterday, following a three-day trial before 86th District Court Judge Casey Blair, the jury returned a guilty verdict on the charge of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14 in approximately an hour of deliberation.

According to testimony heard at trial, Champ met his victim at the age of 4 when her family moved to the community to join the Gray's Prairie Mennonite Church congregation. Witnesses testified the victim was abused from the age of 5 to 9 years old. Additionally, jurors heard testimony of Champ's abuse of other prior victims who were all minor children at the time of their abuse.

The sentencing phase of the trial was held Thursday morning, September 1, 2022.

"At the conclusion of the testimony, jurors responded with a swift and appropriate verdict of life imprisonment," read a statement from the district attorney's office.

"No one is above the law," stated Kaufman County District Attorney Erleigh Wiley following sentencing. Wiley thanked the Kaufman County Sheriff's Office and the New Holland Pennsylvania Police Department for their investigative work and, most importantly she says, the "victims who so bravely told their story."

Prosecution was led by Assistant District Attorneys Ashley Holman and Leslie Odom, District Attorney Chief Investigator Mike Holley, and Paralegal Amanda Morris.