Second lawsuit filed against Newspring Church claims church volunteer sexually abused child
CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A second lawsuit has been filed against a North Charleston church where a former volunteer was accused of sexually abusing young boys.
Police say Jacop Hazlett performed sex acts on children while volunteering at Newspring Church off Ashley Phosphate.
The latest lawsuit was filed Jan. 9 on behalf of a 3-year-old boy who was an alleged victim of Hazlett. The suit states surveillance cameras recorded Hazlett sexually abusing the unnamed child on at least three occasions and recorded other children being sexually abused over the course of several months.
The suit accuses the church of being negligent, failing to properly vet Hazlett and not properly training volunteers regarding sexual abuse. It also alleges battery on the part of Hazlett and the intentional infliction of emotional distress.
The suit claims that once children began to complain about the abuse, the church’s security chief and his team reviewed video surveillance and informed the police department of multiple events of “blatant and flagrat abuse clearly displayed on video.”
Hazlett, 28, was charged in November with first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor. Investigators say he took a 3-year-old boy into a bathroom on Nov. 25 and then performed oral sex on him before pulling the boy’s pants back up.
It is not clear whether the alleged incidents in the new lawsuit were among the 14 mentioned in the first lawsuit.
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