Ex-Missouri minister might be held as sexual predator
JOPLIN (AP) — A southwest Missouri judge said a former minister meets the legal criteria as a sexually violent predator who could be committed beyond his prison sentence.
Circuit Judge David Mouton on Wednesday approved a state attorney general's office petition seeking to have 83-year-old Donald Peckham of Sarcoxie held after his scheduled prison release. The former pastor of the Jubilee Christian Church is scheduled to be released from prison next Wednesday.
The Joplin Globe reports after the judge's ruling, state law requires an inmate be evaluated and a trial must be held for the proposed commitment.
Peckham was convicted in 2004 of first- and second-degree statutory sodomy. When he was arrested, he told investigators he committed sexual acts against 50 to 100 boys, although he later significantly lowered the number.