SMITHFIELD – On Monday, a Johnston County Jury found Jonathan David Young of Benson guilty of multiple counts of rape, sex offense, and taking indecent liberties with children. The charges involved three separate children and spanned from 2003 to 2014.
Prosecutors said much of the child sexual abuse occurred at the Firstborn Baptist Church near Benson. Young served as a Sunday School teacher at the church for several years.
During the two-week trial, the jury heard from two additional witnesses who testified they were sexually abused by Young when they were young children.
Superior Court Judge George Collins presided over the trial. After the guilty verdicts, Judge Collins sentenced the 38 year-old defendant to serve a minimum of 87 years to a maximum of 109 years in prison.
“The Johnston County District Attorney’s Office is pleased with the verdicts and the sentence imposed. Our hearts go out to the brave survivors who had the courage to disclose and testify in this case,” said Paul Jackson, Assistant District Attorney. “Everyone in our community owes them a debt of gratitude. Their courage in the face of such harsh judgment and scrutiny was amazing and an example of true heroism.”
“We thank lead investigator Lt. Jamie Snipes and the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office for their hard work in this very complicated and difficult case,” Mr. Jackson said.
“Thankfully this sexual predator will never again be able to harm another child. The Johnston County District Attorney’s Office will continue to aggressively pursue and bring to justice those who prey upon the children in our community,” Mr. Jackson stated.