July 19, 2009

York's wife pleads guilty

Athens Banner-Herald
April 1, 2003
By Stephen Gurr

The wife of convicted child molester and cult leader Dwight ''Malachi'' York pleaded guilty to a felony charge Tuesday in federal court.
Kathy Johnson, 34, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Macon to misprision of a felony.
Misprision of a felony means ''she knew a felony was taking place and she didn't do anything about it,'' said U.S. Attorney spokeswoman Pam Lightsey.
Johnson, along with York, had originally been charged with crossing state lines for the purposes of sex with a minor. As part of the plea agreement, that charge was dropped in exchange for Johnson's admission that she knew the offense was taking place.
Authorities said York and Johnson took children from the group's Putnam County compound to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., where they engaged in sex acts with the minors.
Johnson faces a maximum sentence of three years in prison when she is sentenced by Judge Hugh Lawson in about two months. She remains free on a $75,000 bail.
Johnson still faces state charges involving the molestation of a number of young victims after being indicted last year in Putnam County Superior Court. That case has not yet gone to trial.
York, a self-styled messiah of the quasi-religious United Nuwaubian Nation of Moors, admitted in November to molesting at least 13 young boys and girls at his group's Eatonton compound. In exchange for the guilty plea, York was given a state-recommended sentence of 14 years in prison, to run concurrently with his federal sentence.

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