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3-2-05         Sunday school teacher

 

Sunday school teacher gets jail

A sexually abused 8-year-old girl describes her anger as a judge sentences the man who baby-sat her

 

BY ALFONSO A. CASTILLO
STAFF WRITER

March 2, 2005

Speaking timidly from behind an eye-level lectern in a Riverhead courtroom, an 8-year-old girl yesterday confronted the Sunday school teacher who betrayed her trust and molested her.

Winston Lindsay, 60, of North Babylon, was sentenced to six months in jail and 10 years' probation for his conviction by a jury in December on charges of first-degree sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child. Prosecutors said he abused the girl while baby-sitting for her on several occasions.


"This defendant has changed her life forever,"

 

prosecutor Andrea Groeger said of the victim, whom she described as "withdrawn" and "ashamed." Newsday does not identify the victims of sex crimes.

Lindsay said he is an ordained minister at the Faith Tabernacle Church of God in West Babylon, where he would sometimes walk with his victim to Sunday school. Lindsay also was a police officer in his native Jamaica.

"It's tearing me up so much, what Mr. Lindsay did to my daughter," the girl's mother said through tears at the sentencing. The child, wearing a girl's dress coat, gazed up with her mouth agape at her crying mother, then approached the lectern.

"I feel disappointed and I feel mad and I feel angry," she said in a calm and muted tone, "because he did this to me."

Addressing acting State Supreme Court Justice Michael Mullen, Lindsay's attorney, Bruce Roistacher of Hauppauge, maintained his client's innocence. "If you sentence me to prison, you'll be sentencing an innocent man," Lindsay said. Mullen said he would not sentence him only to probation, largely because Lindsay rejected that in a plea deal offered so the girl wouldn't have to testify.

Mullen said the charges were "even more troubling" because Lindsay is

 

"a man who has that position of trust. ... People follow people like that, the clergy, to the ends of Earth," he said.

 

Copyright © 2005, Newsday, Inc.

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