Sunday, March 2, 2014

David Gibbs, Jr. -- Investigating Gothard?


UPDATE: 
The involvement of Gibbs' law firm in the "outside investigation" of Bill Gothard has been confirmed by the Chicago Sun-Times"Seth Kraus, of the law firm Gibbs and Associates in Cincinnati, said the firm is conducting a review of the allegations. That review is at the request of its client, the Christian Law Association, which was asked by the institute’s board to do an outside review, Kraus said."


Attorney David Gibbs, Jr. is a longtime friend of Gothard's Institute. Though he has never been a member of the board, he is a popular speaker at ATI conferences. From the IBLP website:
"David Gibbs attended his first Basic Seminar in the early 1970’s. He marveled at what he heard and purposed to apply it to his life. He went on to become a lawyer and founded the Christian Law Association, which serves hundreds of churches without charge. He has become a conference favorite..."
Gibbs, whose Christian Law Association has been described as "the Fixers for fundamentalism", gave three sermons at last year's ATI training conference in Nashville and is slated to address this year's conferences, too.  He also has a close relationship with fundamentalist Clarence Sexton of Crown College (which shares a board member with IBLP). One does not have to look far to find Gibbs sharing a podium with Sexton, or with Gothard.

Gibbs' firm was also general counsel for Accelerated Christian Education (a.k.a. School of Tomorrow) for over 20 years. According to Johnny Scaramanga at Leaving Fundamentalism, Gibbs served as president of A.C.E. after founder Donald Howard was forced out by scandal. (A.C.E. was the curriculum used at IBLP's Indianapolis Training Center to "homeschool" minors in their care.)

In Federal District Court in 1982, Gibbs represented a Christian reform home taken to court by girls who had been abused and brainwashed there. The home was affiliated with Lester Roloff, another of Gibbs' clients. In 1977, Gibbs represented Lester Roloff against the state of Texas, arguing that Roloff's homes for teens should not be required to comply with the Child Care Licensing Act.

David Gibbs, Jr. is also the attorney for First Baptist Church in Hammond, Indiana. When their pastor Jack Schaap confessed to an illicit relationship with a minor from his church in July 2012, Gibbs was called upon to conduct the internal investigation of Schaap, in cooperation with law enforcement, and gather information to be "appropriately given to authorities". (Schaap plead guilty and is serving a twelve-year sentence.) Schaap's victim told the court in a letter about how he groomed her, "[Schaap] told me to confide in him, to trust him, and he made me feel safe and comfortable around him as a man of God. He preyed on that trust and my vulnerability."

Hmmm, why does that sound familiar?

Now it seems the IBLP board is counting on David Gibbs, Jr. to conduct an "investigation" into the allegations against Bill Gothard. I appreciate that the board is trying to respond, but I wonder how many victims of abuse and/or harassment at IBLP Headquarters would be comfortable sharing their stories with this man?



Posted on Stuff Fundies Like blog



12 comments:

  1. Sigh. Of course they chose him. :-( Ayiyi.

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  2. Unfortunately not surprising. Do you have s link for the source?

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    1. My source is not published, sorry. It would behoove IBLP to distance themselves from this fellow, don't you think?

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    2. Actually I think just the opposite is true....Jesus makes me look good.....
      As He lives His life in and through me, hopefully It is Christ in me that people see He works in me both to will and to do of His good pleasure...what a trip...amazing what He can do and does when I step aside and let Him do His thing in and through me.

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  3. I hope public pressure will make them see that an independent investigation is the only right thing to do. Enough of this nonsense!

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  4. Sadly, not surprising. His son, David Gibbs, III was the attorney for Chuck Phelps, infamous for shaming a rape victim in front of the church (Trinity Baptist, Concord, NH). They are both disgusting.

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  5. Gibbs and the Christian Law Assn. do not charge since untold numbers of Fundamental Baptist churches as well as many fundamental "Christians" send money to support the association, Gibbs, his son, and other lawyers and staff members. I-without knowledge, wisdom, or understanding- sent contributions to the CLA in the 1980s. Since that time, I have learned much about the CLA and Gibbs. Gibbs plays both sides (government and "church") having sold out in the 80s after being solicited by the big boys of fundamentalism.

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  6. Amazing. His track record of defending Roloff and Schaap should be enough to disqualify him. The very fact that he was chosen should make anyone interested aware that justice for victims is not being sought here, but absolving the empowered abuser. Sickening.

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    1. He was not the attorney for Schaap - he was the attorney for First Baptist Church, whom he advised to dismiss Schaap immediately and sever ties with him before the investigation even began.

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    2. Schaap's defense attorneys were Paul Stracci and Alison Benjamin. I have no way of knowing when or if Gibbs advised the church to cut ties with Schaap. In spring of 2011, Gibbs was certainly praising his friend Schaap as a spiritual "giant" and leading crowds to applaud Schaap at First Baptist of Hammond.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HceRcEtBykk (See 13:40-16:40).

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  7. Headless Unicorn GuyMarch 11, 2014 at 4:11 PM

    "Attorney David Gibbs, Jr. is a longtime friend of Gothard's Institute."

    One Hand Washes the Other...

    "The Fixers of Fundamentalism."

    And it looks like The Fix is In.

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  8. Oh for heaven sakes, you guys really amaze me. No one is above reproach in the Christian community. Truth will prevail. Try practicing what you preach.

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