Skip to main content

Pastor sentenced for exposing himself on Web camera

SALT LAKE CITY — A former Salt Lake City pastor who exposed himself over the Internet to someone he believed was a 13-year-old girl was sentenced to 90 days in jail Monday.

William J. Blanscet, 67, pleaded guilty in January to two counts of dealing harmful materials to a minor, a third-degree felony. Monday, his attorneys told Third District Judge Robin Reese they had "never seen anyone punish himself the way he has" before asking the judge for a 90-day sentence.

Reese instead sentenced Blanscet to zero to five years in prison but suspended the prison time and ordered Blanscet to serve 90 days in jail followed by three years of probation. The judge also ordered him to not use the Internet — for any reason.

Blanscet was a pastor at the Church of God of Prophecy at 425 N. 700 West in Salt Lake City — and had been for more than 40 years, prosecutors said. But on May 14, he resigned and had his bishop's license revoked, according to a spokesman for the church.

One week later, Blanscet was charged with four counts of dealing in harmful material to a minor, all third-degree felonies.

Police said he exposed himself on multiple occasions using a Webcam to a person he thought was a 13-year-old girl.

The first instance was in July 2008, when Blanscet, under the username "happyutahman," contacted an investigator with the Attorney General's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force posing as a 13-year-old girl. He contacted the "girl" in a chat room multiple times over the course of several months.

On four different occasions Blanscet used his Webcam to expose his genitals — including two instances where he transmitted images from a local hospital where his wife had just undergone knee surgery, court documents state.

Blanscet's wife was in the courtroom Monday and Blanscet's attorney, Greg Skordas, cited the man's family as a reason to give Blanscet an abbreviated sentence.

"This has been tough on Bill and his family," Skordas said. "His wife is present and remains supportive and his family remains supportive of him. He's frail. I've never seen someone punish himself the way he has. ... He is a very good man."

Blanscet apologized to the court, the state of Utah and his family.

But state prosecutor Paul Amann said the case was "particularly egregious" and warranted a sentence of at least 180 days.

"It's not just that he was doing this while a gentleman of a certain age who should have known better, but he was the pastor of the church and had been for more than 42 years," Amann said. "He should have turned to something other than what he was doing on the Internet."

Blanscet and his family declined to comment after the sentencing. He is to report to jail April 27.



Popular posts from this blog

An Update Since My First Post

By Aspieguy ~

It occurred to me that it has been nearly two years since I wrote my first post to this site. Much has happened to me during the past two years. The christians would call this a "praise report". That isn't a phrase I ever used. A "I'm pissed at god again report" would have been far more amusing.

Two years ago I was struggling with my recent Aspergers diagnosis, leaving christianity and becoming an authentic person. I am pleased to say that I have made a lot of progress.

After much searching I found a therapist who was willing to treat an Aspie adult. She treated children but never an adult. I was far and away beyond her experience. However, she helped me to realize that my behavior wasn't abnormal and that other people viewed life not in such stark terms as I do. She was concerned about my anxiety, which we came to realize was a result of religious indoctrination. I never attended any church as a child. Imposing religion on me was like tr…

The Righteousness and the Woke - Why Evangelicals and Social Justice Warriors Trigger Me in the Same Way

By Valerie Tarico ~

I was Born Again until nearly the end of graduate school, a sincere Evangelical who went to church on Sunday and Wednesday with my family and to Thursday Bible study on my own. I dialed for converts during the “I Found It” evangelism campaign, served as a counselor at Camp Good News, and graduated from Wheaton College, Billy Graham’s alma mater. I know what it is to be an earnest believer among believers.

I also know what it is to experience those same dynamics from the outside. Since my fall from grace, I’ve written a book, Trusting Doubt, and several hundred articles exposing harms from Evangelicalism—not just the content of beliefs but also how they spread and shape the psychology of individuals and behavior of communities, doing damage in particular to women, children, and religious minorities.

It occurred to me recently that my time in Evangelicalism and subsequent journey out have a lot to do with why I find myself reactive to the spread of Woke culture among…

"Gifts of the Spirit" include PTSD

By Robyn W ~

I'm a 58-year-old successful business woman who has suffered horribly my entire life from religious abuse. My parents are/were zealot Christians with my dad being a HUGE hypocrite. I was raised in the Assembly of God Church in a small town in the middle of Iowa. The pastor was a cult leader to the core and that poor congregation went through incredible heartaches and financial loss because of that man. My dad was a deacon and my mom was the piano player. We were at that church every Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday night and most Friday nights were prayer meetings.

It was hellfire and brimstone, speaking in tongues, slain in the spirit, holy-roller baptism by fire kind of church and my entire life has been completely fucked up by it. I NEVER learned about the love of God/Jesus. It was ALWAYS fear and realizing you are never going to be good enough no matter what and that you're going to hell. My father STILL to this day tells me I'm going to h…