District attorney: No charges will be filed in alleged church assault

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BLACKWELL, Okla. (KFOR) – Authorities say charges will not be filed after a man says he was assaulted inside an Oklahoma church due to his sexual orientation.

Earlier this year, Sean Cormie told his family that he is gay. After that, he says his family asked him to go to church and bring his partner.

“I wanted to go to church to make my mom proud and make her happy,” Sean Cormie told News 4 in September.

At the end of the Sept. 8 service, Cormie claims that 12 to 15 congregants circled around him and his partner in a loud prayer circle. At the same time, he says the pastor began making statements about homosexuality.

“‘It’s a sin, it’s an abomination, you need to realize, wake up, and see it for a sin,’” Cormie said.

When the pair got up to leave, Cormie claims he was physically assaulted.

“I couldn’t believe it, a church of all places would show hate and not love,” Cormie said.

Pastors Bill and Tami McKissick said in a statement, “On behalf of First Assembly we have been asked by the media to respond to the allegations that have been made. This began as a family matter that escalated. Our church would never condone restraint of any person unless they were engaged in violent activity. There is much more to this incident, and we are cooperating fully with law enforcement to hopefully bring all of the facts to light as a rush to judgment is not in anyone’s best interest.”

Now, the Kay County District Attorney says he does not plan to file charges in the case.

In a note from District Attorney Brian Hermanson, he says the Blackwell Police Department presented the case to his office.

However, he says that due to certain inconsistencies, charges will not be filed.

“After examining the thorough investigation conducted by Blackwell officers, no charges will be filed against the named suspects. Inconsistent eyewitness accounts create reasonable doubt as to the validity of the allegations. Since we are tasked with proving all cases ‘beyond a reasonable doubt,’ we are prohibited from filing criminal charges, which cannot meet the burden,” he wrote.

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