Sexual Predator at NC Homeless Shelter; Fifth Street Ministries

Fifth Street Ministries Punishes Victim For Reporting Sexual Misconduct by Staff
STATESVILLE, N.C. - Jan. 5, 2024 - PRLog -- Homelessness is an enormous social problem in the United States. Homeless women in particular are vulnerable to multiple forms of victimization including coerced, or manipulated sexual activity.

On 12/5/23, the Shelter Manager at Fifth Street Ministries received a phone call from a resident to report the ongoing sexual misconduct of a male staff member with female residents. The staff member in question, a 50 year old male resident of the shelters "Vets House" had been working as an office staff member for several months.

The "whistleblower" met with Shelter Manager, Jeremy on 12/6/23 in his office, giving him dates, times and places, as well as text messages between her and the staff member which included detailed descriptions of his desires. While she did not claim to be forced, the accused did elude to having the power to log residents absent causing termination from the program. Security cameras caught the staff member in compromising positions with at least 2 additional female residents including a 19 year old girl.

The accused staff member was fired, but allowed to remain at the Vets House until 12/21/23, when he was moved to another facility.

The whistleblower was promised no repercussions. This was not to be the case. Within 3 days she was moved back to the Night Shelter Dorm from the Transition Dorm with no explanation. When she pressed for an answer she was told she had no savings.  Not only did her current caseworker Debbie never meet with her, but knew nothing of her situation. Her savings was used to attain her own housing so when that reason was disproved she was given other possible reasons. None just. Her former caseworker Rebecca, had extended to 1/5/24 and told her if she needed an extra week or two it would not be a problem. Rebecca has since been moved to a different facility. Executive Director, Michelle Knapp refused to stand by what Rebecca had stated and denied the request for the extension. She will be out on the street today, 1/5/24, even though she has never had so much as a write-up. During the meeting requesting the extension she asked if this had to do with the situation she reported. Caseworker Debbie stated "you brought that situation on yourself."  A wonderful example of blaming the victim, from someone who makes their living "helping victims".

The actions of Fifth Street Ministries in its attempt to clean house by moving the staff member and expelling the whistleblower is unfortunately the norm, but is unacceptable.

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Tags:Homeless Shelter Misconduct
Location:Statesville - North Carolina - United States
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Page Updated Last on: Jan 05, 2024

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