4:44 PM
Pete Newman

The former director of Kanakuk Kamps is facing charges out of La Plata County, Colorado for an alleged sexual assault of a child under the age of 15.

Peter "Pete" D. Newman, 34, Lebanon, Ohio, was arrested on a Colorado warrant as he made an appearance on a change of venue motion last week in Taney County. Newman was charged last September with several alleged sex offenses against underage boys who were campers at Kanakuk.

In Colorado he is suspected of sexual assault on a child under 15 by a person in a position of trust for an alleged sexual assault that took place in September of 2008 at Kanakuk's K-Colorado facility near Vallectito. Joe White sold K-Colorado to his daughter and son-in-law. They have renamed it Kivu.

Kanakuk Kamps is Christian summer camp for boys and girls between ages 7 and 18 headquartered out of Branson, MO.

Newman, had been employed by Kanakuk for ten years before his resignation and termination last year.

Investigator Sam Eggleston with the La Plata County sheriffs office says that his office is conducting an investigation to try and determine if there are any more victims in their jurisdiction. "Sexual assault cases are a touchy subject. There's a lot of pain and embarrassment that accompanies cases like this. Cooperating victims will make the cases against Newman easier to prosecute." Eggleston says the investigation is ongoing.

I've been in touch with agencies in multiple states who are considering charges against Newman."

Newman, who is being held in the Taney County jail on $250,000 bond out of CO (Taney County is holding him without bond,) will not be officially charged with the suspected Colorado offense until he is extradited to Colorado and is formally arraigned.
Taney County prosecutor Jeff Merrell says that just because his office filed charges against Newman first that doesn't necessarily mean that they will have trial advantage, "whoever has their case ready to go first will get the first crack at Mr. Newman."

Newman's next scheduled court appearance is March 4, 2010 in Taney County.

NOTE: When I made a call to Kanakuk last week I was told that Kivu had been sold to the son and daughter-in-law of Joe White. One of the readers of my blog brought it to my attention that it was sold to White's daughter and son-in-law. Another call to Kanakuk was made, and this time I was told the correct owners are in fact White's daughter and son-in-law.

In new jail intake records from Newman's latest arrest he lists Lebanon, Ohio, as his home.

The story has been corrected.


Anonymous said...

...and he hasn't lived in Memphis for several months....he was living with his parents in lebanon ohio until now...now he lives in branson in the taney co jail...

Anonymous said...

Gosh Kathee, your "link" to KIVU doesn't even link to KIVU! The expedition was something related to the former Kanakuk Colorado. People who read this "to get the story" are only getting confused. Good grief!

Kathee Baird said...

The link works, I just tried it.

If you scroll down you'll see that The Expedition at Camp Kivu is operated in conjunction with Camp Kivu.

Who are you quoting "to get the story?"

If you don't like the blog, don't read it.

FYI...If you think nasty, begrudging comments affect me, rest assured they don't!

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to tell Kathee thank you for keeping us up to date on this story. I really appreciate it and I'm sure others do as well.

Anonymous said...

Kathee, would you have any idea if he is going to be extradited to CO any time soon? How does that work, since he's supposed to have another hearing here in about a month?

When do you think a trial will be scheduled for this case b/c they've now been having hearings since Sept. and it seems like there has been nothing accomplished.


Can you address any of these questions? Been asking over at the other blog, but no one seems to have any answers.

Thinking you can help with this.

Thanks so much for your information and hard work!

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry if I missed this somewhere, but when does this trial begin? And is it going to be here or moved to another county?

Kathee Baird said...

NO trial date has been set. The change of venue motion hasn't even been heard or ruled on yet.

That motion is to be addressed next month. It will be automatically granted because Taney County has less than 75,000 residents. Really the only question is where the trial will be held.

I don't see this case going to trial until late fall or even possibly next year.

Pete is still in the Taney County jail and I don't believe he will be extradited until after the next hearing. The cost involved in transporting him back and forth is going to become huge.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kathee,
Can you tell us if there is a plea deal in the making, which is the word on the street. If there is:
1.) Which charges would he plead guilty to?
2.) When would sentencing be?
3.) What happens with the CO charges?
4.) WHEN would he be pleading? At his next hearing?


Anonymous said...

Do you have any of these answers?

Kathee Baird said...

Check out this post: