NBC 6 Exclusive: Victims react to local pastor being sentenced for sex crimes

NBC 6 Exclusive: Victims react to local pastor being sentenced for sex crimes

Victims of Rev. Andrea Lewis say 6.5 years is not enough time for the pastor to serve in prison.

A Shreveport pastor will spend 6.5 years behind bars for sex crimes.

Today, U.S. District Judge Elizabeth E. Foote sentenced Andrea Lewis for taking young girls across state lines for sex.

Two of his victims say the sentence was too light.

“I don't like the length,” says Jane Doe, one of Lewis’ victims. “If it had been done in the early 2000's or later, he would have had a harsher sentence, but because it was done in 1998/1999, his sentence wasn't as strong."

"I feel like the sentencing wasn’t lengthy enough,” says Jane Doe III, another victim of Lewis’. “I mean, because I've endured 10 years plus, building the rest of my life. I'll always be affected by this and six and a half years will never equal up to the pain that I've endured, because of this situation."

Lewis is the former pastor of Act on Faith Ministries off of Hollywood Avenue.

Prosecutors say between 1994 and 2000, Lewis used his status as pastor and choir director to convince young female church members to have sex with him.

He would also use choir trips and other church related travel to cover up the sexual abuse.

In August 2012, Lewis was charged with five counts of molestation of a juvenile. Then, in November 2013, he was hit with federal charges.

In court, Lewis told the judge he ultimately helped his victims succeed.

He said, "I can't apologize for something somebody accused me of. I apologize for you and I having to face each other like this."

One victim says she was offended.

"For him to stand up and say that he's pleased with the way we've come out, that was so...oh my God, off the wall," says Jane Doe III. "He think that he was the one who did everything, he's the one who got us where we're at, and it was nobody but God who got us where we're at. [If] anything he made it more difficult."

Judge Foote also responded, telling Lewis, “You seem to display a lack of awareness as to your actions and the affects of your actions.

After serving his sentence, Lewis will be on supervised probation for three years. He'll have to register as a sex offender and enroll in a sex offender specific treatment program, which he’ll have to pay for. Judge Foote also ordered Lewis to pay $300 to the Crime Victim Fund.

Lewis can still appeal the sentence.


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