Have you ever wanted to see a “Where are they now?” feature on an anti-gay pastor who was arrested for sexually assaulting a stranger?
Well, let’s take a look at Gaylard (yes, seriously) Williams, a former pastor at Indiana’s Praise Cathedral Church, who was arrested for battery in 2014.
Williams, who was known for his anti-LGBT rhetoric, was arrested for approaching a young man’s vehicle at a lake and “grabbing and squeezing” the stranger’s genitals. The then-pastor ran after the victim pretended to reach for a gun, but police tracked him down and found gay porn in his car.
Today, Williams isn’t spreading hate against the LGBT community from a pulpit, nor is he behind bars. He’s working at a Walgreens in North Vernon, Indiana, where some residents and fellow employees want him fired. They say he hasn’t reformed his ways, and that he shouldn’t be working with minors.
One resident who frequently shops at the Walgreens in North Vernon and is dating an employee there told me Williams has received numerous complaints from customers and workers alike. Some locals have even refused to go to the store because Williams is working there, according to the resident, who chose to remain anonymous.
“My main concern is him working there with other minors, and the experiences I’ve had with him in the store,” the resident said in a private message. “I personally feel uncomfortable that my girlfriend works in a store with him and that he is even able to work there in the first place with kids.”
He added that Williams is only able to work with minors at Walgreens because he was charged with battery and not sexual assault, despite the fact that he grabbed a stranger’s genitals and asked him for oral sex.
The resident also shared a personal experience:
“I was buying condoms at the store, he came up to me specifically and told me he’d check me out at a different register than the main one. He tried getting me to engage in conversation about why I was buying them and was acting very erotic about the whole situation, and told me “if you ever feel uncomfortable buying these here, just come find me, I’ll help you”. This was before I knew about him, but it made sense after I found that out. There are employees there that are literally afraid to work with him because of the way he acts to kids, and on one occasion a girl was fired for calling in to work every time that she had to work with him. He definitely hasn’t changed who he is, rather more cautious to hide his dark personality.”
I don’t know if Williams has changed his ways or not, and the manager of Walgreens didn’t immediately return my request for comment, but my advice is simple: follow the evidence.
This could be a story about a misunderstood pastor trying to work his way back into society, or it could be a much darker tale, but we have to let facts (and not emotions) shape our opinions.