Someone relates their conversation with Chuck Phelps.
I called Chuck Phelps this morning after reading the position statement of Bob Jones University about Chuck Phelps being on the Cooperating Board of BJU. Marshall Frankin had said that people should call Chuck Phelps. Link to position statement here:
I called the church number. The lady that answered said that Chuck Phelps would only speak with those who gave their phone number. I gave my phone number and was transferred. Dr. Chuck Phelps answered.
I explained the reason for my call.
For the next 12 minutes, Chuck Phelps spoke, I listened quietly.
He first stated that he was glad that I had called, that he had ”waited and waited for people to call and get the truth but no one had been calling.”
He went into great detail relating how he had sought legal council back in 1997 from two attorneys who went to Trinity. He went into detail telling me, that these two attorneys told him he and the church faced possible law suits if Phelps had told the church that Ernie Willis was the father of the baby Tina was carrying when both Tina and Willis stood before the congregation.
Phelps pointed out that one of the attorneys taught at Franklin Pearce Law School.He stated that Tina had an “ongoing relationship, more that one dinner for her birthday with Ernie after she claimed she was raped.” “She kept seeing him.”
“You have to understand, Tina was very close to the age of consent.”
(Tina was not over the age of consent when Willis had sex with her.)
Immediately after this statement, Phelps said, “You are only the third person to call me about this.”
He then switched gears completely and began talking about Christine and Daniel Leaf. His thoughts seemed to meander randomly from one topic to another during the conversation.”At the time of Tina’s alleged pregnancy, Christine Leaf was a single mom.”
(Alleged pregnancy? What an odd statement at this point in time.)
He portrayed Mrs. Leaf as a hard-working single mom. “Tina was rebelling against her mother.”
“Daniel Leaf was in prison for abusing Tom.”
Dr. Phelps:”Tina at no time told me that Daniel had sexually abused her. Tina is lying when she told 20/20 that I had ever told her to go to the prison to confront Daniel. That never happened. That I didn’t do. Her mother testified that this a reconciliation plan from the state of NH for when the time came for Daniel to be released from prison.”
( Still calling Tina a liar?)
He suddenly switched to complaining about the blogs.
He stated that he never called Tina a liar from the stand.
“The quote circulated that I called Tina a liar is a bold face lie. I NEVER said such a thing. Never.”
He stated that the prosecutor “Wayne Coull set me up as the bad guy during the trial.” “The prosecutor painted me to be punitive in my dealings with Tina, and lenient with my dealings with Ernie Willis. That was simply not the case.” (It sounded as if Chuck Phelps were crying.)
He rambled on for a few more minutes about how he was portrayed in a bad light by Wayne Coull.
At the 12 minute mark. I said,
“Dr. Phelps, I only have a few more minutes to speak with you, do you mind if I ask you a few questions?”
Chuck Phelps stated, “Don’t interrupt me, I’m not done.”
I said, “Dr. Phelps you have spoken uninterrupted for 12 minutes. I timed it. I have said nothing. I have a few questions, may I please ask my questions?”
Me: “Dr. Phelps did you a police report when Tina reported she was pregnant from being raped?”
Phelps: “Yes. Yes. I filed numerous reports. So did Tina’s mother under my direction. Tina’s mother worked for the state of New Hampshire. They knew where to find her.”
Me: “Dr Phelps I am not asking what Christine Leaf did, I am asking what you, yourself did. Did you yourself file a police report?”
Phelps: (Voice raised) Yes! I filed NUMEROUS reports!”
Me: “Dr. Phelps, I am not yelling at you. I have never raised my voice, have I?
“Phelps: “No, you haven’t.”
Me: “I am a truth seeker. Please don’t yell at me. Ok?”
Me: “Did you make a written police report.”
Phelps: “No, I called the police and DYFUS. Back in 1997 NH law didn’t require written reports.”
Me: “So? You never filed a written report to the police or to DYFUS?”
Phelps: “No as I told you, NH law did not require that to be done back in 1997. I had sought legal counsel on how to proceed.”
Me: “I have to admit, I’m a little confused with your statement that you weren’t required to file a written report to police of DYFUS. especially back in 1997. Your confident that your memory is correct about this?”
Phelps: “I am 100% confident. In 1997 I was not required to make a written police report.”
Me: “Written police report? ok. How about DYFUS, did DYFUS require written reports in 1997?
“Phelps: “I called DYFUS and they told me, this was a police matter now. DYFUS was secondary.”
“Me: “Dr. Phelps, please bare with me. I’m trying to understand. Ok?”
Me: “Did DYFUS require written reports in 1997?”
Phelps: I’ve already answered that! (Chuck Phelps sounded angry)
Me: “Dr. Phelps did you tell Tina she should be lucky she didn’t live in OT times or she would have been stoned?”
Phelps: “Not in those words.”
Me: “Not in those words? What words did you use?”
Phelps: “I opened the Word of God with her.”
Me: “You read Deuteronomy 22:23-24?”
Phelps: “Well, yes. uh but….not only that verse.”
Me: “But you did read Deuteronomy 22:23-24 to Tina? Yes or No? Can you see now, with the benefit of hindsight, of course, how a confused teenage girl would take what you said literally?”
Dr. Phelps: “No. She knew what I meant.”
Dr. Phelps began talking about Ernie Willis’ pending appeal.
Me: “Let’s go back to the reporting issue. You told me that in 1997, NH didn’t require police reports to be written?”
Dr. Phelps: “Yes.”
Me: “You’re telling me, that if I research this, or have an attorney research this. I will find that anyone in New Hampshire in 1997 could merely make a phone call to the police and accuse someone of sex with an underage girl. That phone call would serve as a police report and be the basis of any prosecution for the serious charge of rape of a minor?”
Dr Phelps: “I was required under New Hampshire law to only call the police. I now wish I had camped out in front of the Concord Police station.”
Me: “I don’t believe camping out would have been necessary. Did you return Detective Gagnon’s calls to contact him?”
Dr. Phelps: “Officer Gagnon said he called my wife. That is incorrect. If he had my wife would have given me the message and I would have called him back. He never called me.”
(Earlier the prosecutor “set him up” now Phelps is an accusing a sworn retired police officer of the crime of perjury.)
Phelps changed the subject once again.
Phelps: “Tina said my wife asked her if she enjoyed it. My wife, Linda would never have said such a terrible thing.”
He went on for a few minutes about how he and his wife have “suffered terribly.”
Me: “I don’t know whether your wife made such a statement or not. However, I was asked the same question by Jim Berg and his wife when I told of being sexually abused. I was also told that if I did, I needed to confess that to the Lord. Is it possible that your wife was taught such a thing at BJU? Thought that was an appropriate thing to say because that’s what she had been taught?”
Dr. Phelps: “No! NO! My wife never said such a terrible thing! My wife was a virgin when we got married, and wouldn’t even know to say such a thing!”
(What a strange statement! His wife was a virgin when they got married? What did that have to do with the price of tea in china?)
Me: “As I said, I wasn’t there. However I can tell you, it was said to me in a counseling context.”
Dr. Phelps: “If Dr. Berg said that, that was a terrible thing for him to say.”
Me: “Yes it was a terrible thing for him to say, and there is no ‘if’s’ he and his wife both said it.”
We talked for a few more minutes. Dr. Phelps appeared to get more verbally combative with me.
Me: “Dr. Phelps have you tried to reach out to the Andersons, or to Tina herself since the trial?”
“Dr. Phelps: “Would never meet with Tina without a third-party present. She would misconstrue my words and my intentions.”
“Me: “So? That would be, No?”
Dr. Phelps: “I have legal advice to not do so as well.”
Me: “One more question. Do you have regret the way you treated Tina back in 1997?
Dr. Phelps: “No, I have nothing to apologize for from how she was treated in 1997.”
Me: “You have nothing to apologize for?”
Dr. Phelps: “No.”
Dr. Phelps: “You have to excuse me for being short. I have received dozen calls about this since yesterday.”
Me: “A dozen calls? First you said I was the first, later you said you had 3 calls, now it’s a dozen calls? Color me confused?”
Me: “Thank you sir, I have to go now.”
**The whole conversation took 35 minutes. I didn’t ask him all the questions I planned to ask. However, it was clear in my own mind at least that he did not sound humble, was deflecting and blaming everyone else.
IF the detective attempted to contact Chuck Phelps and he didn’t return the detectives calls, Chuck Phelps is incorrect. According his own admission he was told by DYFUS that this case was a police matter. Here’s the law that was in effect at the time. Link.
“169-C:30 Nature and Content of Report.
An oral report shall be made immediately by telephone or otherwise, and followed within 48 hours by a report in writing, if so requested, to the department. Such report shall, if known, contain the name and address of the child suspected of being neglected or abused and the person responsible for the child’s welfare, the specific information indicating neglect or the nature and extent of the child’s injuries (including any evidence of previous injuries), the identity of the person or persons suspected of being responsible for such neglect or abuse, and any other information that might be helpful in establishing neglect or abuse or that may be required by the department.”
Source. 1979, 361:2. 1989, 146:2. 1994, 411:17. 1995, 310:175, eff. Nov. 1, 1995
A few thoughts.
1) Chuck Phelps complains that the statement that he called Tina Anderson a liar is false. Personally, I find it interesting, no one else who attended the trial has made the complaint that the unofficial transcript is inaccurate. It has now been several months since the trial.
2) Chuck Phelps claims he was concerned he and Trinity Baptist Church could be sued for telling the truth? That is the defense of libel and slander-truth.
3) Chuck Phelps claims Tina was close to the age of consent in New Hampshire. Fact is Ernie raped Tina before the age of consent. She was 15. Close only counts in horseshoes and hand-grenades.
4) Daniel Leaf was imprisoned for physical abuse of Tina’s brother Tom. After he served a year for this, he was released. Daniel Leaf was convicted of molesting a little girl in a McDonalds Bathroom. Both of those offenses occurred before this. As a result of the second conviction Leaf is required to register as Sex Offender. I believe Daniel Leaf was imprisoned when Ernie raped Tina for indecent exposure which violated his parole.
5) Christine Leaf is hardly a candidate for mother of the year. Here’s a statement by another individual who also witnessed the trial.
6) I find his statement that Tina Anderson knew what he meant when he read Deuteronomy 22:23-24 interesting. He says she knew what he meant. Does he have the gift of clairvoyance?
Please don’t forget to sign the petition and encourage others to sign to send a message to Bob Jones University to Chuck the CHUCK.