“Several lawsuits have been filed against NewSpring Church, alleging that it failed to properly vet Hazlett and that leadership failed to train its workers to monitor video cameras, which allowed the abuse to continue.”
(Heather Clark – Christian News) A former volunteer childcare worker at NewSpring Church in South Carolina, a megachurch that has multiple campuses, including in Anderson, Charleston, Columbia and Greenville, has been sentenced to 75 years in prison after being found guilty of abusing preschool age boys while watching them during the service.
As previously reported, Jacop Hazlett was taken into custody last fall after being accused of molesting a three-year-old boy while escorting him to the restroom at NewSpring Church’s North Charleston location. Children are placed in childcare while Sunday services are underway.
Baptist News Global reports that after staff learned of the alleged incident, they reviewed security footage of the childcare area and discovered numerous incidents where Hazlett had molested boys while taking them to the restroom. As the church only retained videos for 90 days, it was believed that there were possibly additional victims.
Hazlett was initially charged with one count of first degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor, but additional charges were leveled against him within days. On Aug. 1, a Dorchester County Grand Jury also indicted Hazlett on 10 additional charges, bringing the total number of counts up to 23.