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June 8th, 2012
12:22 PM ET

Police arrest Georgia megachurch pastor after disturbance at home

By John Murgatroyd and John Blake, CNN

Atlanta (CNN)– Megachurch pastor Creflo Dollar was arrested in suburban Atlanta for an alleged assault on his 15-year-old daughter, police said Friday.

Deputies in Georgia's Fayette County responded to a call about a domestic disturbance about 1 a.m. Friday. Dollar's daughter said she argued with her father over attending a party, said Investigator Brent Rowan of the Fayette County Sheriff's Office.

The daughter says the argument got physical.

She told the deputies that her father charged her, put his hands around her throat and began to choke her, according to a police report. She said he then slammed her to the ground, punched her and beat her with his shoe.

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Dollar's daughter was able to get away and dial 911, Rowan said.

Deputies noticed a scratch on the daughter's neck and arrested Dollar on charges of simple battery, family violence and child cruelty.

Deputies also spoke with another daughter, 19, who corroborated her sister's account of what happened.

Dollar was booked into the Fayette County jail early Friday. A judge set his bail at $5,000 during a morning hearing, and he was released.

Dollar said in a statement released to the media from his attorney, "As a father I love my children and I always have their best interest at heart at all times, and I would never use my hand to ever cause bodily harm to my children. The facts in this case will be handled privately to further protect my children. My family thanks you for your prayers and continued support."

Dollar is a senior pastor of World Changers Church International in suburban Atlanta, which claims about 30,000 members and has an $18 million sanctuary that resembles a golden-domed spaceship atop a hill.

He built an international religious empire, with broadcasts of his sermons beamed worldwide and speaking engagements in Europe.

A barrel-chested man who favors impeccably tailored pinstripe suits in the pulpit, Dollar preaches the Prosperity Gospel, a message that says God will bless faithful Christians with wealth and debt-free living.

Since he started his ministry in an elementary school cafeteria in 1986, Dollar has earned both praise and criticism.

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Supporters say he has preached a message that's financially empowered his parishioners and challenged the idea that Christians should be ashamed to be rich.

Critics call him "Cash-Flow Dollar," a pulpit prima donna who once refused to allow parishioners to touch him. They say his message perverts the Gospel.

Dollar has had brushes with the law before, according to a lengthy 2000 profile in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

He was once cited for contempt of court for refusing to give a deposition during the divorce proceedings of boxer Evander Holyfield, who attended his church, according to the AJC.

The AJC profile also said that 100 police officers were admonished for receiving $1,000 apiece from Dollar. Dollar sent the money to honor the officers' community service, but the act was criticized because it came a month after two traffic tickets Dollar received were downgraded to warnings, the profile said.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Crime

soundoff (3,399 Responses)
  1. Marie

    I will keep the Dollar family in prayer because children can get disrespectful. I'm a mother I know. Pastor Dollar is the head of his house and what father isn't going to protect his child from the enemy. At the age of 15 she should've respect her father when he told her no partying. Pastor Dollar keep standing on your Word and I know you already doing so. Our children need more fathers for correction. That's why AIDS and fatherless children are on the rise by trying to grow up to fast.

    June 9, 2012 at 6:31 pm |
    • Snik

      The lack of a strong father figure is one reason for the outbreak of h.o.m.o.s.e.x.u.a.l.i.t.y in this country.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:34 pm |
    • Creflo Dollar

      Thank you. I was trying to choke the devil out of that girl. And I'll tell you that no son of mine would ever be gay because I would choke the hell out him too. Children need a firm hand, or else they can escape. Praise Jesus!

      June 9, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
  2. Mom from the caribbean

    I have raised two boys and not one of them had dared to step out of line with me. They got several "whoopings" when they were young and those corrections made them learn respect early! As they became teenagers that form of discipline was no longer warranted because they learned to be obedient, respectful and (I'm sure had some sort of fear)...thats right fear! I believe if you are bold enough to call the police when you are disrespecting me (in my house) then better make sure your bags are packed and you're ready to ride out with the cops.

    June 9, 2012 at 6:22 pm |
    • JWT

      Not all parents are deserving of respect. Fortunately some kids get to get out of their abusive homes earlier than others.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:25 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      "learned to be obedient" ... what are they a poodle's? sounds like you need a shoe put to you, BAM! take that, BAM! and again

      June 9, 2012 at 6:27 pm |
    • Marie

      I agree have your bags packed when you call 911!

      June 9, 2012 at 6:33 pm |
  3. kev

    I preach to your son about the paper like I'm Creflo Dollar, I pop you punk haters like I pop my collar.

    June 9, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
  4. jynx

    I remember when people used to reminisce about how their parents disciplined them. "My mamma didn't play that. She didn't take no stuff off of none of us kids. I I had tried to call 9-1-1, she would spot me the 9 and the 1 and dare me to try for the last digit." And we would say how parents really cared back then, and how today's kids don't respect anyone one.

    And now, we have this ...

    June 9, 2012 at 6:11 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      sounds like someone should have kocked the taste out of their momma's mouth and dialed that last 1

      June 9, 2012 at 6:15 pm |
  5. Al

    Satan and his demons on earth are rejoicing that a Man of God is having troubles. (Man of God = capable of making mistakes like Moses, David, and Abraham did)

    June 9, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      Actually, his daughters friends at school.. and all other children around Atlanga are rejoicing that another child beater is being delt with. It's ashame the police couldnt take their shoe off and beat his ass before arresting him.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:17 pm |
    • john

      Man of God? What a joke, this is a con man.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:20 pm |
    • Satan

      Don't be silly. Mr. Dollar is not a man of god.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:26 pm |
    • weezy

      To a pimp named slickback and satan... time to take your meds and get back in your cages.

      June 9, 2012 at 7:32 pm |
  6. Gregory

    Friends, I want you to lay hands on your radio and say "I Believe". Then send $100 to...

    June 9, 2012 at 6:07 pm |
  7. Richard Krauth

    Take your dollar. UNREAL

    June 9, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
  8. Control Control

    Obviously the beater has control issues and needs to learn restraint and patience. All he needs to do is become a
    7th grade teacher for a year, then he'd think his daughter was an angel.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
    • Blane

      Far be it for a father to need to control his daughter. Face-Palm

      June 9, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
    • trey

      Got that right! Try navigting through their disrespect in the classroom where they can ruin your career, with their drama if they want to

      June 9, 2012 at 5:56 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      trey, if you're a teacher, you must have ordered your diploma and certification from E-Bay.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
    • trey

      clearly this guy is neither a parent or been in a classroom in awhle...............

      June 9, 2012 at 6:00 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Who is "this guy", trey?

      You didn't get through high school, did you?

      June 9, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
    • trey

      🙂 even worse he sounds like one of my self absorbed middleschoolers!!

      June 9, 2012 at 6:04 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Poor little thing. You must really struggle.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:05 pm |
  9. Get Real

    Read the actual police report.......{http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2012/06/megachurch-pastor-creflo-dollar-charged-with-attacking-his-daughter/1#.T9Ow4rBfF3U}

    June 9, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  10. Sam

    Christianity and Islam, two most dangerous and violent religions in the world.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:34 pm |
    • A Serpents Dump

      Religion is stupid.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
    • Blane

      Actually, atheism is the most violent religion in the world.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:56 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Another stupid canard. Atheism isn't a 'religion', mutton-head.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:03 pm |
  11. Blane

    People are posting LIES about Pastor Dollar. He does not chase young boys. I don't know where you get that. Perhaps you are confusing him with Bishop Long? Pastor Dollar is an upstanding man.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
    • A Serpents Dump

      Other than he strips his daughters naked and beats their supple young tight bodies with a shoe. That's hot. Someone make a parody pron of this asap so I can get off now!

      June 9, 2012 at 5:34 pm |
    • Dawn

      Yeah, an upstanding man who chokes and beats his daughter.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • weezy

      A Serpent's Dump IS A COMPLETE FOOL IN THE PUREST FORM... NO DILUTION.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:01 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Do you think repeating yourself in ALL CAPS somehow gives you more credibility, weezy?

      June 9, 2012 at 6:05 pm |
    • ThePastorwantsyourdollars

      Sure...parts of him are upstanding, especially around little boys.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:05 pm |
  12. GreatGrany5

    I don't believe the girl for one minute and you are so right. Railroad anyone that preaches the Word of God and add on to the speed with which they do it, the fact that HE believes what God's Word really does say.

    JESUS said in John 10:10 "The thief's purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life." So, if the Destroyer comes to steal, kill and destroy. So does that make the MSM (Main Stream Media) the Destroyer?

    June 9, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
    • A Serpents Dump

      Jesus was a homeless con artist. Hey! A con artist just like pastor dollar.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
    • ThePastorwantsyourdollars

      Jesus said to Shut your piehole, Grany.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
    • weezy

      To a serpent's dump... you are a complete fool in the purest form.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:53 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      Did you read the police report that was posted? There was a witness, that described the entire beating exactly as his daughter said it was. Are you blind? Are you deaf? Can you not believe the words that are printed in front of your face?

      June 9, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
    • john

      What you believe is irrelevant. This con man beat his daughter and tried to choke her.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:23 pm |
    • Creflo Dollar

      It is thanks to fools, er, believers like yourself that the Lord has blessed me. Praise Jesus and pass the plate!

      June 9, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
  13. marboss

    hey guys stop blaming the parents for some actioons they took, first the daughter was asked question why are you crying; her answer I don't want to talk to you this is a 15yrs old who came late home and has a bad grade from school; come on guys the father is a human being not an angel let us be realistic. I'm a parent of 16yrs old 14 yrs old and more.... you don't know what i'm going through stop blaming the parent for some actions I know it went to far sometimes but let us pray the the family. partying is good if something bad happened, you could be blaming the parents for letting the kid out till 1:00am.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • Interested48

      So choking your child is justifiable???!!! You can't be serious.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:53 pm |
  14. Al

    Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      Well I haven't beat a child before, so let me find a good sized rock

      June 9, 2012 at 6:08 pm |
    • Creflo Dollar

      I didn't have a stone, that's why I used a shoe.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:52 pm |
  15. Kathryn

    You can tell he's hurt and been broken up by this. He loves his family terribly and is a pastor -FOR THEM- to teach them the Word of God.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I would agree. He does seem humbled. I don't think a comparison can be made between his actions and the actions of Bishop Long at all. btw, I am an atheist.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
  16. mm

    No wonder kids are so disrespectful and rogue today. If parents can't discipline them then who is going to reign them in? If I can't discipline my kids then it's time for them to go. And I would put these two Beches out of my house immediately.

    June 9, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      Sounds like you need a good beating from your kids

      June 9, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
  17. Get Real

    So the Pope rides around in a bullet proof car, a gold encrusted jacked and a diamond studded hat and lives in his own city state and has more real estate holdings than anyone one on earth in the name of the church, and he is a man of God. (Prosperity to the max)....But a brother from Atlanta accomplishes a minuscule amount of that, doing the same work for God and he is a money grabbing preacher????????? Just how does that work?

    June 9, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • Blane

      I think they are trying to railroad him. No matter what you think of his lfestyle or ministry, he is at the end of the day a father looking out for his daughter. She will rue the day when she called the police on her father.

      June 9, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Get Real

      Blane...True. Things will never be the same in the Dollar household.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
    • Samuel Burnside

      Stop making excuses for him ! He is not a man of God. He is a leader of fools....you dont need to follow a man to be with God. And if you are constantly defenfing him...then there is a problem. See the light...better find God on your own...not some rich guy, that love little boys and hits his daughter ! You give us a break !

      June 9, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • weezy

      Very good point!

      June 9, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
    • weezy

      TO SAMUEL BURNSIDE – the bible states that "the fool has said in his heart there is no GOD. Pastor Dollar followers believe in God. So just who are the fools!!

      June 9, 2012 at 6:05 pm |
  18. Blane

    Liberals think that any physical discipline is child abuse. Get with the real world!

    June 9, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • ezo

      Liberals? Conservatives? Really? Amazing how ignorant people have become. Every argument under the sun is now reduced to liberal versus conservative. Can folks just have an opinion without being labeled? Geez...

      June 9, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • Jean

      The man was CHOKING her, shoved her to the ground, beat her with his hands and shoe!!!! That is not 'discipline', that is abuse!

      June 9, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
    • Blane

      So you take the word of a lying 15-year old?

      June 9, 2012 at 5:54 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I'll bet Blane thinks the ministers who advocated beating a kid who 'acted gay' are A-Okay.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:55 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      Blane, step closer my man.. So I can plant my shoe on your forehead ! BAM! your healed ! BAM! take that ! come on, sounds like you haven't had a good shoe beating in a while

      June 9, 2012 at 6:21 pm |
  19. Roger

    What is a 15 year old child doing arguing with their parent? If you don't like my rules, get out and find somewhere else to live. If the police don't like how I correct my children, then let the police raise them.

    June 9, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      actually you sir, you could be corrected by your child beating your ass properly

      June 9, 2012 at 6:11 pm |
  20. REV. J

    THE ONLY WHACKOS ARE YOU PEOPLE WHO ARE TOO IGNORANT TO KNOW THIS IS NOT EVEN A NEWS STORY. HE IS A FATHER WHO OBVIOUSLY WANTED TO DO ANYTHING HE COULD TO STOP HIS CHILD FROM GOING SOMEWHERE WHERE HE DID NOT FEEL COMFORTABLE...WE ALL WOULD DO THAT TOO. SCRATCHES ON HER NECK..??? STRUGGLING NOT TO LET HER GO..HE IS A PARENT AND A HUMAN BEING WITH EMOTIONS LIKE ANYONE ELSE...YOU FOLKS ACT LIKE PASTORS WALK ON HOLY WATER AND NEVER GO THROUGH ANY TURMOIL...HYPOCRITES...LET THOU WHO IS WITHOUT FAULT CAST THE FIRST STONE...LOTS OF STONE THROWERS HERE READY TO TRASH THE MAN FOR ANYTHING. IF HE FARTS/ YOU CALL HIM NAMES..HE IS A GREAT MAN WHO PREACHES AND TEACHES WELL. LISTEN TO HIS WORDS..THEY ARE INSPIRING AND UPLIFTING AND TRUTHFUL..YOU DONT HEAR, YOU JUST SIT THERE LIKE LITTLE DEVILS WAITING FOR ANY INCIDENT TO SAY SEE....YOU PEOPLE MAKE ME SICK TO MY STOMACH..

    June 9, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • Samuel Burnside

      Good try Rev J. We make you sick..because there was a time when we did respect of REV. And yes he is a man of God.
      I tell you this....we are not the one to judge....so lets see who burning in HELL. No need for you write this TOTAL CAP statement. We will be judged by God ! Leave at that...okay. You people ! He can chase young boys and then talk agains LGBT and you would still follow....God will judge...so sleep well.

      June 9, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • a pimp named slickback

      Rev J, obviously your wife needs to throw you to the ground, and beat you with her shoe

      June 9, 2012 at 6:13 pm |
    • JWT

      TV and radio evangilists – send the cash – are amongst the worst human sc um on the planet.

      June 9, 2012 at 6:24 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.