1:19 PM

Pete Newman Mug Shot 10-29-09

The former assistant director of Kanakuk Kamp was thrown in jail today for showing up late for court.

Pete Newmann was due in court at 10 a.m., but didn't show up until right at 10:15, angering Associate Circuit Court Judge Tony Williams.

Newman's attorney Tom Carver attempted to explain to Judge Williams that it was his fault that his client was late....but at that point it was already too late as Williams had signed a warrant for Newman's arrest.

Tom Carver (above)

Newman, who had been free on $50,000 bond, is now being held in the Taney County jail on an additional $10,000 CASH ONLY BOND......and a $90,000 signature bond.

Last month, Newman was charged with four felony charges for sex offenses involving children that allegedly took place at the camp and at Newman's Taney County home.

Newman's twin brother, mother and father attended today's hearing in Forsyth.

Note to attorney Carver....if your client gets out of jail he will want to show up promptly at 1 p.m. on November 17th, as that is that date that Williams has set aside for Newman's preliminary hearing.

Taney County Prosecutor Jeff Merrell says that no additional charges have been filed against Newman at this time. However, Merrell says that detectives are continuing to investigate allegations against Newman and that additional charges could be filed in this case.

Newman was terminated in June after being employed by Kanakuk Kamps for more than 10 years.

UPDATE 1-30-09 @ 11:15 a.m.:

After being held behind bars for about eight hours yesterday, Newman posted bond about 6:15 last night.



Anonymous said...

Thanks for keeping us posted on this. Why isn't this getting more mainstream press? WHY would he have been late? You would think that since he entered a "Not Guilty" plea that he would have been ON TIME!

mrchrishill said...

looks like a warrant was reissued, no arrest or suspect behind bars. also thanks for documenting your fact findings in the future.

Anonymous said...

When are you ever going to get the facts straight about Newman's termination date???? He was not fired in June!!! It was MARCH!! Do you get that? MARCH! My gosh, you'd think being in journalism you would make sure you know the basic information.

Anonymous said...

I certainly hope Tom Carver plans to pay the $10,000 to bail him out of jail. What an egotistical man. Apparently this judge is very likely to do something like this and Carver knows this about him. What a screw up. Sounds like he's not such a good lawyer after all! Not worth the money. At this point Pete Newman would have been better off without a lawyer! What an idiot!! No good lawyer would EVER show up late to court. I can't imagine! Fire the guy!!

Anonymous said...

Thank God Pete Newman is in jail where he deserves to be. He is absolute filth and deserves nothing more than to be locked away.

Kathee Baird said...

To Anon 9:22:

If you will read the probable cause statement it says, "on June 8, 2009,Joe White (Kanukun Kamp owner,) receives a signed 8 page letter from Pete Newman confessing to his actions and supplying an apology. Kankuk Administration (owner and directors) fill out voluntary written statements after interviewing/terminating Pete Newman. The written statements provided that *Pete Newman admits to being naked with the victims and masturbating in their presence and engaging in mautual masturbation with the victims."

So, according to court documents I DO HAVE MY FACTS CORRECT.

Do you have some inside information that you would like to share with me?

Oh, FYI....the probable cause statement is linked in one of my September Newman stories.

Anonymous said...

I'm just trying to stay up to date with the case, but not to make either "side" mad, I believe you both are right.

Pete Newman was fired from Kanakuk in March. It has not been made apparent why he was fired, but an email was sent out to all current and former staff of K-Kountry, the specific Kanakuk camp where Newman worked, at that time to say that Pete was leaving due to personal family issues and to not to try to contact him. I have seen the emails that were sent out in March.

So, yes, Pete was fired in March.

Also, Pete did give a signed written statement in June to Joe White confessing to his actions. At that time, Kanakuk contacted the appropriate authorities. Pete Newman was not employed at Kanakuk at the time, but did hand in a sign letter which resulted in the police being contacted.

So, yes, he was fired in March, and yes, he confessed in June.

As far as why he was fired, it has not been made completely clear. Whatever it was, Kanakuk did not explain and simply said it was a family issue. This is my own opinion, but what I think occurred is one or more families confronted Kanakuk on this very issue - but did not want to press any charges or involve their family publicly. When Kanakuk learned about that specific issue, they fired Pete Newman, but at the request of the family, did not inform the authorities. Then, when Pete Newman turned in the letter, and Kanakuk realized that this was more than an individual incident, they informed the authorities.

This is the only scenario I can think of that would a)result in Pete Newman being fired b)have Kanakuk not inform the police at that time and c)Kanakuk later inform the police when there was a greater problem.

And don't think it is strange that someone would want to hide what occurred, but have the person removed. I know of 2 other youth workers personally that were confronted for indecent activities, removed, but no charges were pressed because the families did not want to go public.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kathee, thanks for keeping up on this story. However, Pete was terminated in March, not June. The document from which you reported is not correct.

Joe White sent an email to all Kanakuk families in March, stating that Pete was no longer with Kamp and that he was dealing with a family crisis. At that point, Joe couldn't state the "family" crisis since the legal charges had not yet been made.

In June, Pete did give Joe the eight page letter. But, that is not when he was terminated.

Again, thanks for your work in keeping this important story in front of us.

Anonymous said...

Kathee, I can see why you thought that the firing date was June, but all indications are that it was actually in March. I think the original complaint was vague/mis-leading.
Here's a quote from Doug Goodwin of Kanakuk: "We have tried to correct that mistake from Day One. We are telling every media agency Newman was fired in March — not June."

Source is the Tulsa World. http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?subjectid=11&articleid=20090924_11_A14_Aforme198963

Anonymous said...

Picking Tom Carver as his lawyer is easily the worst mistake Pete's ever made.

Kathee Baird said...

I was going by the statements filed with the charges.

Thank you all for letting me know the charging document was not correct.


Anonymous said...

does anyone know anything about his attorney? what kind of attorney shows up late like this?

Anonymous said...

To the poster at 11:51:

So you think hiring Tom Carver is the biggest mistake he's ever made?

Try telling that to the victims and their families. His biggest mistakes were the habitual, sickening, sexual scenarios he manipulated these boys into, under the guise of "purity counseling." They trusted him and he abused their trust to get his sick thrills.

I hope he NEVER leaves prison.

And to Pete's parents, family, and Katie: Once you know all the prosecutor knows, you WILL NOT be standing by him in this. Well, maybe his parents because they are his parents. But Katie, you need to run for the hills!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You are just very very very very very naive and uninformed as of now. Sad. Very sad.

Once you do know, if you stand by him then, we'll wonder about your sanity.

Anonymous said...

It's been reported that Pete's attorney, Tom Carver, was caught up in traffic because of the rain. Pete was at the court in plenty of time and waiting for the attorney outside, as the attorney instructed him to do.

Kathee Baird said...

To anon October 30 @ 1:09 a.m.:

I would like to talk with you or anyone else off the record further about people being let go from Kaukuk for indecent activity.

My email addresses are:

meyer_news@hotmail.com or


Phone: 417-224-1897

Anonymous said...

thanks so much for all your doing to get this story out there. WHY isn't the national media picking up this story??? seems to me that this stands to be a HUGE story - pete's father is the chaplain for the green bay packers, his twin brother is the pastor of a mega church in lebanon, oh, his other brother works for kanakuk international. it just doesn't make sense why this is being kept so quiet.

Anonymous said...

A couple of slight corrections for the poster at 9:56 p.m.

Pete's father used to be chaplain of the Green Bay Packers. He has been in a different ministry location for several years. And, Pete's twin brother is pastor of a normal sized church in Ohio, not a mega church.

All three of Pete's brothers and father are in full time ministry...and, they are all devestated by what Pete did.

Anonymous said...

Any word on his wife and children and whether they are still supporting Pete? My son is a kamper and loved Pete. We are all so sad for his wife and the families. Pete was such a dynamic personality. It's such a shame and misuse of authority.

Anonymous said...

The entire situation is heartbreaking.Our family has had 2 generations of campers/counselors for 15 summers and counting.We have had very close involvement with Pete and many other Kanakuk staff and this ordeal has been so painful.We are worried about the families involved,Pete & his family, the Kanakuk staff and the campers who looked up to Pete.We are signed up for camp next summer and know that God's grace and love with get all involved through this tragic time.Not all things are meant for us to understand and our family will heal much faster with love & compassion rather than anger and disgust. Strength be with you.

Anonymous said...

I don't think anon from 1:09 on Oct. 30 was referring to other youth workers from kanakuk. I think they meant in general. And folks, let's not drag Katie through the mud here and question her sanity for standing by Pete right now. Pointing fingers will not help here. What a mean judgmental thing to say. Pray for this family and all the families affected by this. If you judge, one day you will be judged. Fingers may be pointing back at you for your decisions to stand by those you love. That is a certainty.

Anonymous said...

Agree with previous comment, I worked closely with Pete at K-Kountry and it is so sad to see this awful sin affect so many people. Many prayers lifted up for Kanakuk, and I will still be sending my kids there in a couple years when they are old enough; at K-Kountry!

Anonymous said...

In answer to the question about Pete's wife and daughter.

Yes, Katie is standing by Pete, and needs your prayers through this ordeal.

mrchrishill said...

Katie and Pete are together and have been receiving professional counseling on this issue since earlier in the year. Thanks for your prayers for all those involved in this horrible event.

For those that know Pete, you know this story only amplifies the point that inside all men is the capacity for great sin as Satan prowls around looking to devour our lives. As hard as it is to swallow now it also testifies that Christ died for ALL sins. As our sin increases the truth of the Gospel only grows.

Anonymous said...

His picture here is almost unrecognizable. He is certainly showing the stress of this.

Anonymous said...

I agree about the picture. Looks NOTHING like the Pete Newman we THOUGHT we knew! He looks like a completely different person! Almost like he is trying to change his appearance with his head shaved. I'm really sad about all of it. Sad for his family, sad for mine. My boys adored him. This has really made them question their judgement. This has been like a death for us. What a shame.

Anonymous said...

The first time I met pete was 10 years ago when I picked up one of my boys at kamp, I have to say I got weird vibes from him when I saw how he interacted with my son. I blew it off when I heard how well respected he was.

I am now dealing with the fact that my other son was "recruited" by pete. This MONSTER deserves only one thing and that is to be locked up in the deepest, darkest hole of our prison system.

How ANYONE can show any support or sympathy for this evil man is completely beyond me.

Am I missing something?

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone supports him except his wife and parents. Once they see the facts, they will know. His parents being there for him in understandable, but his wife staying with a known pervert/predator/scumbag/molester/psychopath/
creep/ evil liar/sick animal is unimaginable. When is she going to come to her senses????

You are right about putting him away...I just hope that is soon before he hurts anyone else. The authorities where he is living ought to be notified so that they can keep a watchful eye on his coming and going. He's living on the run, though, so it might be hard.

Of my 7 kids, 5 are boys who loved him, trusted him, and were befriended by him. It terrifies me to think of his intentions in that.

Kanakuk needs to PRESS HARD for his conviction on these charges, and all the others that have yet to be filed. If they don't, they should expect not to be around much longer.

Anonymous said...

Fatty Fatty 2 X 4,
Can't squeeze through the PRISON DOOR!

Pete, love that smirk!

Anonymous said...

Pete has always liked dressing up and taking on other personas. (Sylvester the little boy holding the teddy bear a few summers back for skits as an example).

When I saw his first mug shot particularly - it struck me that he was almost "playing the part" of an inmate. Almost like, in his mind, that is what a great mug shot would look like, so that is how he presented himself.

I am not certain that we will ever know the truth in any of this, but know that MANY MANY lives will never be the same because of it.

Our family hosted Pete in our home for a weekend. He spent time alone with both of our sons. We are fairly certain, based on our understanding of what we have read, that our older son was being "groomed" by Pete. We are gratfeul that we never felt comfortable sendng him to stay the weekend in Branson with Pete - although he had been invited 3 separate times to do so.

As grateful as we are that our sons were not direct victims, our hearts are broken for the boys and their parents who are. Our boys' faith in people and the Lord is being greatly tested because of Pete's actions - as is mine and my husband's.

As we continue to process this and seek help from qualified professionals, we are looking for lessons in this mess that was created by Pete. The most important piece of advice that we have gotten from our Christian counselor with years of experience in this (sadly), is that we need to keep our son(15 years old - not his younger 10 year old brother) in dialogue about how he is doing...just check in with him a couple of times a week. We have been doing that, and lots of things are coming out, which is great - something good out of this mess.

We serve a God who is in the business of redeeming the lives of those who want to be redeemed. We are seeking that for ourselves and our sons - that we can move past this.

The most infuriating thing with this entire situation for us and our son is the NOT GUILTY plea. I guess Pete just does not want to be redeemed.

Anonymous said...

In response to the blogger on Nov 9th at 12:44...

I'm pretty sure the reason Pete pleaded not guilty is to try to get as minimal of a sentence as possible, and to extend the staying out of prision for as long as he can.

Perhaps someone with more legal knowledge can share their thoughts on the not guilty plea.

Anonymous said...

To add just a bit to my last post at 7:22.

The tragedy of going to trial is it will bring many people in, including Kanakuk, that can cause the hurt to fester.

On the other hand, just as Satan can use the trial in a negative way for festering, God can use it for a powerful good...perhaps in the healing process of the victims and their families having the opportunity to face Pete.

Kathee Baird said...

At this stage of criminal cases it is standard practice for attorney's to enter a not guilty plea/s for their clients.

The preliminary hearing for Mr. Newman has NOT been held yet. Therefore, the state has not presented any evidence to back up their allegations. That will happen next week.

I believe that attorney Carver will probably waive that court proceeding.

If that does indeed happen What it means is that he and Newman recognize that the state has enough evidence against Newman to proceed to trial.

I don't think that either one of them want a parade of boys on the stand right now telling their stories.

I could be wrong. We will just have to wait and see how it plays out next week.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kathee,

Got a question about Mr. Carver waiving Pete's hearing to go straight to trial. If he were going to do that on November 17th, wouldn't he have attempted to do that before the October 29th date?

If he could waive the hearing ahead of time, he would have saved his client's time and money making the round trip to Missouri for the October hearing.

Just curious as to how it works.

Kathee Baird said...

Yes. At any time that an attorney and their client appear at any hearing together the attorney can waive the prelim.

That didn't happen in this case. It will be interesting to find out what happens in the motion hearing on Monday.

There is a new entry up on the motion in the blog.

Carver could waive it then....or wait until Tuesday to do it.

Carver's job is to keep Newman out of jail as long as possible.


Anonymous said...

Sorry I haven't checked back.

As for my first post, as someone has already clarified, the 2 other youth workers I was referring to did not work for Kanakuk. One worked for a Church I went to, and one worked for another organization. Both were confronted on their indecent activities, both were removed/stepped down, but neither was taken to court because the families did not want to go through that entire ordeal. So, I am not sure if that is enough, or if you still want to speak "off the record."

As far as Kanakuk, their interviews are very complete and thorough. In college, I was a Recreation major at one point. I have been through several different camp interviews, and Kanakuk has the most complete. They do not avoid tough subjects - they ask directly. I have been through several camp interviews that when I got to the end, I thought "Is that all?" For those camps, it would be very easy for someone to slip through the cracks. But for Kanakuk, the try their hardest to ensure that the very best counselors are hired. Even after they are hired, they have to sign a statement each year that they agree to not participating in various activities during the year while not at camp. This has even been further scrutinized in recent years with social networking sites.

Unfortunately, and horrifingly, Newman and others like him are not stupid. They are not caught easily.

Anonymous said...

Pete: Tell the truth at your hearing this week. Somebody said that your entering "not guilty" pleas in order to lessen your or delay your punishment. Well, this isn't about you anymore! It's about these victims getting justice and you paying for what you did. Get some balls and go tell the truth. Of course, you having no balls is the whole problem here, you homosexual! You really are that sissy you always used to "act like." If I were your family and you continued to lie, after all you've put them through, I would disown you. It would have been better if you had never been born. You are a waste of oxygen! WHO the hell is stupid enough to pay for your defense?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? You should be tossed into a pit!

Anonymous said...

The NOT GUILTY plea,although may be legally a smart thing to do to keep Pete out of jail for as long as possible was emotionally very damaging for my struggling 15 year old son. He does not understand how Pete could write a letter of confession to Joe and then plead not guilty.

Someone alluded to my concern, but coming from the other point of view. My thought was, "How dare he make boys who loved and trusted him have to even consider testifying against him!" Although this has now become a "legal matter", for many young men and their families, it is much, much more.

Anonymous said...

I'm praying that God will cause Pete to reenter a plea of guilty to save the boys from having to testify in a trial.

Dave said...

Concerning the not guilty plea...

Entering a plea of not guilty should not be construed as a claim to innocence. It nothing else it will allow Newman some time to consider the options available and for the prosecution to potentially make a deal. The latter may save some victims a lot of heartache by avoiding a trial completely.

Is it also not possible (and this is purely speculative) that despite Newman's written confession, some of the specific charges brought against him by the state are, in some technical sense, wrong?

Suppose Newman agrees that he is actually guilty of the first three of the four charges, but believes he is not guilty of the fourth. In this hypothetical situation it would not necessarily make sense for Newman to plead guilty.

We should not be so quick to interpret a not guilty plea as an expression of innocence. Just because the man has confessed to some atrocities does not mean he is guilty of everything we can imagine.

Anonymous said...

It will never go to trial. They enter a plea of Not Guilty so they can have leverage to plea bargain. No one wants these boys in court and they know that. This give Newman's attorney the leverage to negotiate a lesser charge. It is his job to try and get the least amount of jail time possible. Unfortunately, we will probably never completely hear Pete tell his version of what actually happened. I've also heard his letter of confession only includes being naked with a boy and masturbating in his presence. He does not admit to sodomy in the letter is what I understand. Not that it makes it any better. But possibly he is maintaining that he did not commit sodomy in the one charge. I wish he would make a statement and truly confess and ask for forgiveness. This would give these boys closure and help healing begin.

Anonymous said...

This man is guilty guilty guilty. I am so sorry to all of you parents. I hope and pray these young men recognize that they were taken advantage of. That Pete's lies and manipulation were wrong. But ultimately they did nothing wrong!
Pete, being this "godly" man in leadership, should have enough sense to plead guilty. It would be a breath of fresh air for the victoms. He manipulated them for so long. They need to hear it from his mouth that he was wrong. He is sorry.
Sadly, the man's character says otherwise.

Anonymous said...

I have two questions for anyone in the know.

1. What is Pete's December 17th hearing for?

2. Can a civil tril happen before the criminal trial?

Kathee Baird said...

1. On December 17th Newman will be arraigned in circuit court. At that time he will enter a plea of not guilty or guilty. My bet is that it will be a not guilty plea.

2. Yes, a civil trial can take place before a criminal trial. Look at the Rolland Comstack case.

His daughter filed a wrongful death lawsuit against her mother. That case will take place next year.

Anonymous said...

Kathee, is the arriagnment on Dec. 17th for the criminal trial?

Kathee Baird said...

Yes, that is the dated for his criminal ARRAIGNMENT. I hate to say this but I agree with one of the posters that say prosecutors will throw out some of the charges in exchange for a guilty plea.

To me, that victimizes the boy's twice.

I wish this had never happened.

For those of you out there that are sending me hate mail for covering the case all I can say is at least someone (Randy Turner does a good job covering this too,) want's to see justice for these boys!

Anonymous said...

Hey Kathee, just a word of encouragement. I am one who knows the Pete Newman situation fairly well. While I definitely have strong feelings about everyone involved (kids and their families, Joe White and all of Kanakuk, Pete and the Newman family), I'm glad you are reporting on the facts.

People, unfortunately, have a tendency to go at the messenger, instead of discuss the pros and cons of the message.

That's part of our sin problem. We all have a built in tendency to operate based on what we think is best, rather than seek the truth from all sides.

Anyway, keep up your reporting. There are many out here who look to sites like yours to find out what's going on from a legal viewpoint. Thanks for keep us informed.

Anonymous said...

Kathee, you said that if Pete comes in with a guilty plea in exchange for something from the prosecutors, the boys would be victimized a second time.

How would they be victimized a second time? Wouldn't Pete still be put away in prison for several years, probably without parole for quite some time, and the boys wouldn't have to testify in court?

Maybe I'm missing something in how it all works.

Kathee Baird said...

What I mean is that say it is your son that the prosecutor threw the charges out on for a plea.

Will he think....why didn't they believe me, or didn't I do something right? I am a crime victim, they have never caught my attacker.

I have a LOT of survivor's guilt....I sometimes question why God let me live.....I still get mad that I have to live with the memories I have. It's too much drama to get into.

Our justice system works....it's just not perfect.

My advice for any parent that has a child that has been victimized by Newman is to get into some sort of individual and family counseling. Ten years later I still go in every now and then to talk to my therapist.

And to the people that are sending me hate email regarding this case, please don't respond to this post.

As I sit here I am holding back tears dealing with the memories....my heart goes out to the victims and their families in this case...and I guess to me too.

Anonymous said...

so many victims, so many counts. He will go to prison for a very long time. Pray for the victims, the families, and the prosecutor and his help. This has affected all involved and we all just want justice!

Anonymous said...

This blog and Randy's blog are practically the only places I can find information on this story. I appreciate the coverage because otherwise I would not know anything of what is going on. And I am extremely interested in this case because of the relationship we had with Pete Newman. I hope you will continue coverage of this story. Seems the opinions of your readers make for a heated conversation. But, we should focus on what this is really about... Many victims including those of us who's children tell us they were not harmed. So, hopefully we were spared physical abuse. But we are still victims. Our faith is shattered and he is blame. Since he baptized 3 of my boys, and was a guest in our home, we certainly feel very much deceived. But it pales in comparison to these boys who are the true heros in this case. Those who have come forward, you have made it possible that this man can no longer hurt anyone else. You have actually saved lives. You are an inspiration. We should focus on these boys and applaud them and pray for their healing. All of this is possible with the love of Christ and through prayer. As I sit here wondering if Pete Newman is reading this blog or any comments, I'd like to say to him that you will receive justice from this, in this life or the next. You cannot escape the punishment you will no doubt receive. "vengeance is mine says the Lord." And there will be vengeance. No matter what you do, you will pay the price for the damage you have done. To the boys, the families, the camp, the families that entrusted their children to you. These children are sitting there, including mine, with tears in their eyes, asking "was any of that real? All the time I spent with Pete and he taught me about the Bible?" All are victims of your twisted sexual desires. And you used Christianity as your platform. I know there will be justice in one form or another. And I take comfort in that. Maybe your huge ego leads you to believe you won't suffer punishment, or you have convinced yourself that you haven't done anything wrong. Make no mistake "my friend", as you so like to say, you will suffer. There will be a price to pay, "my friend!", for your deviant acts. My hope is that you will confess your actions and ask for forgiveness. Maybe then we can salvage some of the memories of the time spent with you at Kanakuk.

Anonymous said...

I went to petes house 3 years ago with my two freinds for 4 days. when kamp was closed and i knew from the begining he was strange but i was little i didnt know i was 12 years old. and like in the hot tup he would talk about porn and wierd stuff. and everything on that trip was just really wierd.

Anonymous said...

I went to petes house 3 years ago with my two freinds for 4 days. when kamp was closed and i knew from the begining he was strange but i was little i didnt know i was 12 years old. and like in the hot tup he would talk about porn and wierd stuff. and everything on that trip was just really wierd.

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