An investigative report by Atlanta's Fox 5 news station states a fifth accuser in the Bishop Eddie Long sex scandal played a role in the negotiations that ended in a secret settlement between the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church preacher and four other men who sued him for sexual coercion.
Senior I-Team reporter Dale Russell reported Wednesday, July 27, that Centino Kemp, 22, met Long years ago when he was a college student.
"One source says Centino Kemp, who was raised in the Bahamas, met Bishop Eddie Long years ago during a visit to New Birth while he was a teenage student in a Florida college. The relationship meant enough for him to tattoo Eddie Long's name on his wrist, followed by the words, 'Never a Mistake, Always a Lesson,'" Russell reported.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSB-TV are reporting that mediation between Bishop Eddie Long and the four young men who have sued him for sexual misconduct could be ending soon.
In a story posted April 21, the AJC stated an agreement may soon come from the mediation sessions between Long, founder of megachurch New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, which would avoid a trial.
The four men who filed suit against Long in September — Anthony Flagg, 21; Maurice Robinson, 20; Jamal Parris, 23; and Spencer LeGrande, 22 — said they were personally mentored by Long when they were members of New Birth and his LongFellows Youth Academy. They said in court documents that Long took them on lavish trips to places such as Kenya and New Zealand, and bestowed on them extravagant gifts including jewelry and cars.
Long has denied all accusations.
A “Breaking the Silence” interfaith prayer vigil to honor the memories of LGBT youth who have killed themselves in recent weeks as well as pay respect to the four young men who have accused Bishop Eddie Long of coercing them into sexual relationships for their courage to speak out is set for Nov. 13 in Lithonia.
Bishop Eddie Long denied accusations he sexually coerced young men who are former members of his mega-church New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in court documents filed late today.
Long filed four responses in DeKalb County State Court to the four lawsuits filed against him by the four men who allege he used his authority as their spiritual leader into having sexual relationships with him.Long is also asking the lawsuits to be dismissed.
Editor's note: This article by Atlanta journalist and GA Voice contributor Ryan Lee was published in the Dec. 17, 2004, issue of the Washington Blade and is reprinted with permission. It is an insightful look back at the past public stands of the pastor who is now accused of sexual coercion of three young men at his church.