ALBANY, Ohio – A 20-year-old man has been accused of raping two young boys at a church function being held in the Albany Community Center in Albany, Ohio on Saturday.
It was a statewide church convention sponsored by The Albany Bethel Apostolic Church that lasted throughout the weekend with church youth groups from around the state participating. One of the attendees was 20-year-old Richard Merryman. He traveled to the convention on a bus with family who were members of a church in Canton, Ohio.
While there, Merryman allegedly lured a five-year-old boy into the restroom stall where he removed the child’s pants and then performed oral sex on the child. Afterwards the boy’s family noticed something wasn’t right and asked him what was wrong. He told his parents who, along with the church pastor, called police. Merryman was arrested on the church bus before it left the parking lot. He was charged with one count of rape and is being held under $500,000 bond at the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail in Nelsonville.
But it gets even worse. Merryman also is suspected of raping a 4-year-old boy in a stairwell on the same day at the same event. Rape charges for the act against the four-year-old are pending. Merryman has been in trouble with the law before having been charged with battery as a juvenile in Florida. No word yet on if those charges were sexual in nature.
Merryman is facing life in prison if prosecutors can prove there was force involved, and they are confident they can. “Since they were locked in a stall, I think we think we can prove it,” said Keller Blackburn, Athens County Assistant Prosecutor.
It may be hard to believe, but in my youth I spent a lot of time at these types of weekend church retreats (Oh how I miss you, Christmount, and that chick who let me grope her big tits while meditating in the woods. Do your soul some good, indeed) and it’s easy to see how easily this prick could operated completely undetected. Parents have a tendency to drop their guard at events like this because I mean, Jesus, who wants to imagine someone would be giving a 5-year-old a blowjob in the church bathroom, ya know?Tags: church, Crime, Ohio, Pedophile, Rape, Richard Merryman, Sexual Assault