Fort Bend residents seek to remove alleged bully from Third Ward church pulpit
Third Ward church members are seeking injunctive relief after, they say, their pastor shames the church community by engaging in malicious and evil conduct.
Fort Bend resident Gregory Smith, and others, filed a lawsuit on May 24 in the Harris County District Court against the Rev. Theodore Baines Sr., citing trespass to real property, theft liability, conversion and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
The plaintiffs, as members of Mt. Olive Baptist Church in the Third Ward, say that in 2009, Baines, who stands over 6 feet, 4 inches and weighs over 300 pounds, used intimidation and threats to become the church’s pastor. Since then, Baines has brought shame and ridicule upon the church through malicious and evil conduct, including brandishing a gun to run a member off church grounds, using shocking profanity, abusing alcohol and making lewd remarks to women in the church, according to the brief.
The plaintiffs point to a March 11, 2010, incident where Baines was arrested and charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The plaintiffs claim that this highly publicized incident -- he was allegedly waving a handgun while driving on Highway 59 at FM 2218 -- embarrassed and humiliated members of the church.
The plaintiffs are seeking injunctive relief, actual and exemplary damages, attorney’s fees and court costs. They are being represented in the case by Houston attorney U. Lawrence Boze.
Harris County District Court Case No. 2011-31031.
This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed at the Harris County Courthouse. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note, a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt, and it only represents one side of the story.
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