Shifflett back in court

April 25, 2007

Last year former Calvary Baptist Church pastor Charles Shifflett plead guilty to eight charges of abusing children. But his day in court isn't yet over.

An investigation by the Virginia department of Taxation and the Virginia State Police has lead to even more charges.

Shifflett and his wife Janice turned themselves into police Tuesday, April 17 to face numerous charges of grand larceny and obtaining money under false pretenses.

All of the charges occurred between March 2002 and December 2005, toward the end of Shiflett's tenure at Calvary Baptist Church. Court documents identify the church as the victim is most of the charges.

Charles Shifflett faces a total of 51 charges; his wife faces only 22. All are classified as felonies.

Commonwealth's Attorney Gary Close said the current charges were unrelated to the child abuse claims last year. But he wouldn't answer when asked if the child abuse investigation lead to this round of charges. Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Dale Durrer said he had been working on the case for a year.

Sixteen of Shiflett's charges for obtaining money under false circumstances involve taking money from Calvary Baptist directly. He also faces seven charges of grand larceny, stealing from Calvary Baptist outright.

Other alleged victims include Brotherhood Mutual Insurance and Church Mutual Insurance, groups that presumably providing insurance to Calvary.

Janice Shifflett faces 20 charges - four for improperly labeling her tax returns, and 16 for obtaining money for false pretenses. All the money charges stem from Calvary Baptist.

This isn't Shifflett's first time to court.

The pastor attracted much attention last year when former students at Calvary Baptist claimed abuse by their former pastor - some of it nearly two decades in the past.

Last December he plead guilty to six charges of assault and battery, along with one count of cruelty to children. In exchange, he received community service.

The Shiffletts return May 8 to Culpeper County Circuit court for an update on their attorney status.

Samuel Higginbotham, who represented Shifflett against the abuse charges, refused to say if he'd represent the embattled pastor again. Representation for Janice Shifflett remains unknown.
"No comment," Higginbotham said.

Members of Calvary Baptist hesitated to say much on the case.

"I think we all just want this to go away," said one member.

See also:

Shifflett, wife face multiple tax fraud charges, Culpeper Star Exponent, 4/17/07

Shifflett out again, Culpeper Star Exponent, 2/18/06