Man files lawsuit against former children’s minister in Shoals, church

COLBERT COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) –   The Colbert County church that employed Jeffrey Dale Eddie is facing a lawsuit. The defendants in the suit are Jeffrey Dale Eddie, Highland Park Baptist Church, and Loving the Shoals United Appeal Fund, Inc., a non-for profit organization connected to the church.

Eddie used to be the children’s pastor.   He pleaded guilty to sex abuse and sodomy charges earlier this year.

The 13-page lawsuit was filed Tuesday afternoon in federal court. The lawsuit against Eddie and the church is from a person who says Eddie began sexually abusing him in 2001.

At the time, the plaintiff was 11 years old. The suit states the abuse continued through November 2013.  It also states the church provided little oversight, monitoring or supervision to Eddie as children’s pastor.

According to the suit, acts of sexual abuse took place at various locations at Highland Park Baptist Church including Jeffrey Eddie’s office and a storage closet.

The plaintiff claims the abuse also happened on Highland Park Baptist Church sponsored trips and in the church van.

Some of the counts named in the document include infliction of emotional distress, false imprisonment, assault and battery.

The lawsuit also states that the plaintiff was damaged as a result of Eddie’s actions. The plaintiff is seeking monetary compensation and punitive damages as determined by a jury to be fair and reasonable based on evidence presented in the case.

This is the first lawsuit filed against Jeffrey Dale Eddie and the church since Eddie pleaded guilty in March of this year.

The plaintiff is now an adult and lives in Louisiana.

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