As you read this, I want to make a little list of the facts in this story.
- Cathy tells us that she was a new nursing school graduate, engaged to be married, working at an emergency room in Philadelphia.
- She was raped by a single associate pastor from Richard Harris’ church.
- Richard Harris and the rest of her adoptive family (she calls them “afather” and “afam”) tried to stop her from pressing charges.
- She went to court and then couldn’t proceed and abruptly left.
- The kindly police detective talked her into meeting with people from NOVA.
- They helped her deal with the situation and the trial went on.
- The rapist was convicted and sentenced to 25 years in prison.
- He is a register sex offender.
- He is a Bob Jones University graduate.
- Cathy was in her twenties when this happened.
This is a poor copy of this comment, made separately from the original story, but you can still read it.
- Somehow, Bob Jones let the guy leave Greenville without reporting it to the police.
- He’d raped three other people.
- One of the others was a child.
Gee, that’s quite a tale, isn’t it?
I began looking into the facts around this narrative by constructing a timeline.
1964 – Cathy Harris was born
1984 – listed as a freshman in the Vintage at Bob Jones University
1986 – listed as a sophomore in the Vintage at Bob Jones University
1987 – listed as a junior in the Vintage at Bob Jones University
1989 – married to James Fallon
There are a few things to note. First, when Cathy says she told the rapist that she was engaged, she might have been lying to try to get him to leave her alone. So, she may not have been referring to James Fallon at all. However, it would seem that if she were already married, her rapist would have known it. He was, after all, an associate pastor at her adoptive father’s church.
At the time of her marriage, she was working at a nursing home. She didn’t graduate from Bob Jones University, and is not a registered nurse. She is a licensed practical nurse (LPN). This is the sort of work that LPNs typically do – nursing homes. Not emergency rooms. They aren’t commonly hired for that sort of job because they are so restricted in what they can do.
1992 – graduated from LPN school, granted license
When I first saw this, I thought something had to be wrong. Cathy was working at a nursing home when she was married in 1989, but this says her license as an LPN was issued in 1992. I thought perhaps they made a clerical error.
But here’s an old copy of Cathy’s license. Same origination date. No clerical error. She was originally licensed as an LPN in 1992, three years after she was married.
So she was not working as an LPN at the nursing home when she was married. My guess is that she was working there as a nurses’ aide, which probably required no training at all.
So, Cathy’s first detail just doesn’t work. She could not possibly have been a new nursing school graduate, working in an ER in Philadelphia, engaged to be married.
But let’s just assume that some of my assumptions are flat-out wrong and there is a reasonable explanation for this discrepancy, and let’s also assume that some ER actually hired a new LPN to work there.
That would date this rape to someplace between 1988 at the earliest and 1993 or so at the latest. She tells us she was in her twenties when it happened. That means the decade from 1984 to 1993. But she was at BJU until at least 1986 or maybe 1987. And even if the state of Pennsylvania made a clerical error about the issuance of her license, she still had to go to nursing school, which takes one year.
Armed with some idea of the time frame of this story, I next set out to find news coverage. After all, this is a rape trial, held in Philadelphia, I assume, since that’s where the supposed rape occurred. But in addition, it’s a story about a young woman, adopted by a pastor, who is raped by the associate pastor of her adoptive father’s church. That would be certain to make the news, especially in Buck’s County, where the church is located.
Here’s a picture of what I found.
After using every search term I could think of I found. . . nothing.
There are a couple of other very odd things about all this, as well.
One is Camille’s obsession with documenting any egregious actions by any Bob Jones University grads or former students. She has a whole Storify page about it.
Maybe she didn’t include this particular BJU grad, an associate pastor at an IFB church, who raped four people, including a child and one of her closest friends, was tried and sentenced to 25 years in prison because she was asked not to by Cathy herself, who didn’t want to draw attention to the story.
But Cathy told the story, in public, in detail.
And Camille could have included the case without mentioning Cathy’s involvement. After all, there were supposedly other victims.
The other weird thing is that bit about how Bob Jones “let” the guy leave Greenville without calling the police. Only he raped her in Philadelphia in the hospital parking lot. How did he get to Greenville and what did Bob Jones have to do with anything? When I first read this, I thought that maybe her comment there was a completely different thing, on a totally different subject. But it isn’t. [I know the copy I have is poor, but it’s a continuation of the same conversation.] Notice the time stamp. Same date, and the first narrative was posted at 9:02 while the second was posted at 9:12. That would give her ten minutes to type out the long first narrative.
So, after I looked and looked for anything, anywhere in the news media that this case ever happened, I did the obvious.
Richard Harris’ church, where this guy was supposedly an associate pastor, is Bethel Baptist Church in Buck’s County, Pennsylvania. I contacted the church.
I had a long, very interesting conversation with a person in a leadership position there. It wasn’t the cleaning lady, or the groundskeeper.
He checked with multiple sources and assured me that no such event ever occurred at Bethel Baptist Church. The associate pastor during the time period involved (late eighties on) was the same person for many years, and he’s never had anything more serious than a traffic ticket. My contact agreed that had such an event occurred, it would certainly have been in all the papers.
If this event occurred, the rapist has either completed his sentence and been released, or is very close to doing so. Shouldn’t Cathy be telling us about this, so we can all be on guard because this rapist is going to be released from prison and will be a registered sex offender for life?
I distinctly remember Camille and another person giving me holy hell once because I dared to say that women sometimes make up rape stories. I was informed that they never ever do that.
Cathy Harris, what’s the guy’s name? It should be easy, a matter of public record. What is his name?
Another brief thought occurred to me. Remember when Cathy got so upset with “N” because “N” telephoned the NOVA center to find out if “Judith” had been heckling clients? I found that story a little unsettling because Cathy’s reaction was so over-the-top, way beyond what might be considered reasonable.
Is this why? Was Cathy afraid that the people at NOVA would tell “N” that they never heard of anyone named Cathy Harris – that she’s never been a client there, ever? Without a rapist, there was no counseling at NOVA and no NOVA representative going to trial with Cathy, and no detective who helped her, and Richard Harris and family did not abandon her at her time of great need.
What is his name, Cathy?