Michael Parsons pleaded guilty to several charges including rape, sodomy, and inappropriately contacting a minor. The former youth minister is sentenced to 13 years in prison, with 10 years in McCracken County and 3 years in Ballard County. Attorneys say new evidence led parsons to accept the plea deal Wednesday.
The new evidence was a paternity test. Attorneys say Parsons fathered a child with the victim. That's why this case was able to come to a close Wednesday and give some closure to the family.
The judge read off the long list of charges and asked if Parsons was guilty, to which he replied, "Yes sir."
When called to comment, the victim's mother stood a few feet away from Parsons.
"I sent my kids to you," she says. "You were the youth minister. I sent them to you to guide them, teach them, give them good morals."
She told Parsons he violated their family's trust and to stay away from the family forever. "You took love, religion, family, you twisted it all up to meet your sick needs," she says.
Parsons was given a chance to respond and said he lost everything. "I have no pride. I have no dignity," he says.
He asked for forgiveness, saying "I understand I have to suffer these consequences for my actions."
The judge responded after final sentencing by saying, "You being a minister of a church and taking advantage of a child in seeking religious training, and you preyed upon her instead in a sexual nature." But he didn't grant parsons any grace.
As part of the plea deal, seven of Parsons' 23 charges were dismissed. He will not be eligible for probation and will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.