Local News

Raleigh church youth director accused of having child porn

Posted March 8, 2012 11:15 a.m. EST
Updated March 8, 2012 4:51 p.m. EST

— Cary police arrested Raleigh Chinese Christian Church's youth director Wednesday and charged him with 20 counts of having child pornography on his church computer.

Jerrod Don McCabe, 35, of 523 Brook Arbor Drive in Cary, had sexual images of girls who appear to be 3 to 14 years old, according to an arrest warrant.

Cary police said they began investigating two months ago and contacted the church two weeks ago. McCabe turned himself in and was released on a $50,000 bond. He faces up to 39 months in prison for each count.

Cary police said they started a cybercrime unit five years ago to specifically crack down on these types of crimes.

"(We) have the ability to monitor child porn trading, so when somebody is downloading child porn, we are able to detect that without the person actually ever knowing we are watching them," said Cary police Captain Michael Williams.

Church leaders fired McCabe earlier this week, according to Rev. Po-Wing Tham. McCabe had been with the church since June.

"We all fall sometimes, sometimes very badly. Our church is trying to heal from this right now," Tham said Thursday.

McCabe's lawyer, Patrick Roberts, said his client resigned from the church, has never had any issues with the law and is not accused of having any inappropriate contact with children.

"At this point, we are cooperating fully with the law enforcement investigation," Roberts said. "He is extremely remorseful. He's tired. This is very stressful for him (and) for his family as well."

Roberts, who described his client as "a good person," said McCabe is committed to service, community work and his faith.

"His family is fully supporting him. I‘ve had a chance to meet with them. They are great people and come from a very good background," Roberts said. "At this point, I ask people to withhold judgment until all of the facts are out."

McCabe's wife of two and a half years, Abbigail McCabe, also works at the church as a part-time youth girls minister. Church leaders said she has taken some time off and that it will be her decision if she continues working there.