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Defendants file demurrer in church civil suit

Cornerstone Fellowship Church in Cobbs Creek and Pastor J. Chris Morgan have filed a response to a $25 million tort liability lawsuit entered against them in Mathews Circuit Court by a victim of sex abuse perpetrated by former Cornerstone youth minister Kenneth Marshall, who was convicted in 2019.

The lawsuit seeks to hold the church and the pastor liable for Marshall’s actions, charging that Morgan was aware of Marshall’s past criminal record and prior drug use and still retained and employed Marshall and provided him with wide-ranging access to church youth. It states that the church “owed a duty of reasonable protection” and “a duty to warn” the victim.

However, in a demurrer filed in Mathews Circuit Court by attorney J. Baker McClanahan Jr. of Richmond, the defendants say that none of the counts filed against them states a claim “for which the requested relief can be granted,” and that Marshall, not the defendants, committed the alleged sexual abuse.

“Neither the church n...

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