Thursday, May 03, 2012

Suit Against Pastor Over Affair With Woman He Counseled Moves Ahead On Some Claims

St. Louis Today reports on developments in a Missouri state court lawsuit by Darrell and Rhonda Pitt against Pastor Bill Little and his now dissolved Christ Memorial Baptist Church of Cool Valley. The suit claims that in the 1980's, Little, who was a licensed psychologist as well as a pastor, had an affair with Rhonda Pitt who was then his secretary. Three years earlier, the Pitts began joint marriage counseling with Little, and at the time of the affair, Rhonda was continuing individual counseling with him. This week, the court dismissed sexual misconduct claims against Little on statute of limitations grounds. However the court allowed the Pitts to proceed with claims that Little defamed Rhonda Pitt from the church pulpit, as well as Darrell Pitt's claims of negligence and breach of fiduciary duty against Little and the church. The court also permitted the Pitts to have access to church documents to determine what knowledge the church had of Little's conduct. Meanwhile Little, who has retired from the pulpit and given up his psychologist's license, has filed counter-claims alleging that Darrell Pitt damaged his reputation by telling congregants that Little had raped Rhonda. Little also claims emotional damage from fiery letters sent to him in 2010 by Darrell Pitt.