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Fort Leonard Wood chaplain to plead guilty to child sexual abuse

A chaplain assigned most recently to a Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, basic combat training unit will plead guilty next week on charges that he repeatedly raped a child, according to his attorney.

Capt. Jeremy Dunn, who recently was a chaplain for 1st Battalion, 48th Infantry, is not accused of sexually assaulting any trainees, according to Tiffany Wood, a Fort Leonard Wood spokesperson.

Dunn is currently assigned to the installation’s 3rd Chemical Brigade.

Dunn was formally charged this spring with six counts of sexual assault of a child, four counts of rape, and three counts of sexual assault. All of the assaults occurred against the same person, Wood confirmed.

Dunn accepted a plea deal Thursday, his attorney, Joseph Flees, told Army Times. Dunn will plead guilty next week to one specification each of child rape, sexual acts on a child, rape by force, and sexual assault without consent, according to Flees.

“The charges are merely allegations and that the accused is presumed innocent unless proven guilty,” said Wood in a statement emailed to Army Times. “If convicted of all charges, Dunn could face the maximum punishment of forfeiture of all pay and allowances, confinement for life without eligibility for parole and a dismissal.”

Under the plea deal, Flees said, Dunn’s maximum confinement would be 18 years.

Dunn allegedly began assaulting the girl in 2015 while he was stationed at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, according to a redacted charge sheet obtained by Army Times.

The alleged abuse continued after Dunn moved to Fort Leonard Wood in December 2018, the charge sheet said. The abuse then continued through September 2019.

Ten of the 13 allegations specified in the charge sheet note that the chaplain used force on the girl.

Maj. Gen. James Bonner, Fort Leonard Wood’s commanding general, referred the charges for general court-martial in March. The trial was set to begin on June 14, according to Wood, the installation spokesperson.

Dunn is the second Fort Leonard Wood religious services professional to plead guilty to child sexual abuse charges this year.

Army National Guard 1st. Sgt. David McKay, whose civilian job was as the youth director for the installation’s religious services office, pled guilty in May to sexually abusing four of the group’s children on dozens of occasions from 2010 to 2017, including on post.

Dunn’s sentencing will take place July 14.

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