Child sex abuse charges against local radio station owner, personality

Local 15 TV - WPMI

Mobile, AL

December 16, 2009

(ROBERTSDALE, Ala.)  "Through his radio station, WNSI, Walter Bowen gets a lot of air time. He's got a morning show where he goes by the name "Walter Jay". But now he is getting some face time through a mug shot and some awful allegations against him.

Despite the nice holdiay greetings still playing on his airwaves, there's nothing nice about the charges against Bowen.

"The indictment spells it out. It was sex abuse against a child less than 12," says Rex Bishop with the Robertsdale Police Department.

Bowen, who owns the radio station with frequencies on both the AM and FM dials, is charged with two counts of sex abuse.

Two young girls in two different cases. Last year, the Baldwin County Sheriff's office began investigating a claim that Bowen sexually abused a child at the First Baptist Church in Spanish Fort where authorities say he served as a minister of music.

Then there was another allegation this year, in August, to Robertsdale Police. After a grand jury indicted Bowen in both cases, authorities arrested him Wednesday morning in the middle of his radio show.

"He was not alone there so there was others that could take over, but I guess he was in the process of his show," says Bishop.

Nobody answered when we went to the radio station.  John Jones, who lives nearby, had not heard the news.

"It's a terrible thing if it's true," says Jones.

Terrible too for Norma Patterson, who's mother lives near Bowen.

"It's always scary when you know that there's someone close by that's been accused of something like that because it makes you never sure of where you're at or who your neighbors are," says Patterson.

Authorities say Bowen was not related to either of the girls, but he did know them.

Despite our efforts, we weren't able to get in touch with the church to see if Bowen is still on the staff.  On the web, the church lists another person as the minister of music. (with video)

SNAP Note: First Baptist Church of Spanish Fort, Alabama, is shown as a church affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.