Sacto 9-1-1
December 8, 2011
Baptist pastor Daniels guilty of molesting girls in Citrus Heights home

By Andy Furillo

afurillo@sacbee.com

A Sacramento Superior Court jury today convicted Rio LInda First Baptist Church pastor Tommy Gene Daniels of molesting five girls in his Citrus Heights home.

The jury found Daniels, 49, guilty on 11 of the 12 counts filed against him.

"I'm happy for the girls," said Deputy District Attorney Kimberly Macy. "I thought there was definitely evidence there" supporting the verdicts, she said.

Judge Trene H. Burger-Plavan scheduled Daniels' sentencing for Jan. 13. Macy said Daniels is facing a life term.

Defense attorney Michael L. Chastaine said he was disappointed with the verdict and that he plans to appeal.

"We are extremely unhappy," Chastaine said.

Daniels was accused of molesting five girls in his residence on Wapiti Place in Citrus Heights. He and his wife used the house as a day care and foster care center.

The jury found that he molested four of the girls who had been placed in the residence under a "respite" care program. They'd all been placed there because of behavioral problems, including a propensity to lie. Macy said in her closing argument that Daniels played off the girls' troubled backgrounds to make victims out of them.

The fifth victim was a girl whose parents used the Daniels' residence for babysitting services.

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