UPDATE: Why "eczema" doesn't wash.
(June 9, 6:00Pm EST) Police: Pastor Creflo Dollar choked, hit daughter
ATLANTA (AP) -- The
15-year-old daughter of megachurch pastor Creflo Dollar told authorities her
father choked and punched her, and hit her with his shoe during an argument
over whether she could go to a party, according to a police report.
price of fame can be very, very costly, even for a rich gospel preacher. Bishop
Eddie Long knew that. Too bad he didn't tell it to his good friend and fellow
prosperity gospel preacher Creflo Dollar. Known for years as the sternest, most
unforgiving of the prosperity gospel men - he regularly chides people in his
congregation for not being rich* - Dollar also gained the reputation as a man
in favor of strong parental control and encouraged
Even before controversial
megachurch pastor Creflo A. Dollar Jr. released a statement Friday denying he
assaulted his 15-year-old daughter, the College Park minister's legion of
supporters rushed to his defense. (Atlanta
supporters of the prosperity pulpit are legion - and cult-like:
"Bishop" Eddie Long's congregation saw him through accusations of real
estate fraud and sexual
abuse. He even wound up being
paraded around his church as
Along with Bishop Eddie
Long, Dollar is one
of the most prominent African-American preachers based around Atlanta who have built
successful ministries on the prosperity gospel, which teaches that God wants to
bless the faithful with earthly riches. Ministers in this tradition often hold
up their own wealth as evidence that the teaching works.
THE FACTS, MAN
denials have a strange way of manipulating facts. Dollar's sermon stated
unequivocally that he did not choke or punch his daughter.
"The truth is: A
family conversation over our young daughter got emotional," he said,
calling claims of violence "an exaggeration and sensationalism."
Dollar said that the photo the police officer took of the superficial wound on his daughter's neck was a 10-year-old injury due to a skin abrasion from eczema, not because of any injury obtained during an altercation.
According to police, however, Dollar's 19 year-old daughter called the police after witnessing the attack. Police questioned her and she said that her sister was indeed choked, punched and thrown on the floor. Her written statement, however, was different and much milder in tone. When confronted with the discrepancies, Dollar's daughter then said that was because here parents were present when she confirmed the written statement. She then recanted it, sticking to her original story.
The eczema abrasion explanation was never given before the arrest, but "after Dollar told the crowd [congregation] about the skin abrasion, one man yelled, "Case dismissed!"
Dollar blamed the devil for causing the controversy, saying that to discredit his message of "prosperity gospel," the enemy must discredit the messenger.
Of course, the devil did it.
This still leaves the question: Why? For the elder daughter to call the police, something more than an "emotional conversation" must have happened, especially in such a strict household as Dollar's.**