Former Michigan pastor gets 17 years in prison for sexually exploiting minors

Posted at 9:13 AM, Jan 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-16 17:40:18-05

(WXYZ) — A former pastor and counselor from Burtchville was sentenced to 17 years in prison for sexually exploiting preteen and teenage girls.

Jackie Douglas Woodburn, 64, was the director of the Colonial Woods Christian Counseling Center, where he worked for 28 years.

According to court records, Woodburn used a chat room-based website to target girls. He pretended to be a teenage boy when talking to these girls and transitioned conversations from the website to email and social media platforms.

Prosecutors say that Woodburn used his age and life experience advantages over the girls to manipulate, pressure, coerce and entice them into undressing and engaging in sexual acts on camera.

According to an indictment, Woodburn allegedly sexually exploited a 12-year-old girl from Texas, a 13-year-old girl from Kansas and attempted to entice a 9-year-old girl from Virginia.

An FBI investigation revealed that Woodburn targeted and exploited several victims that were not identified in the indictment.

“It’s completely reprehensible for any person — let alone a pastor and counselor— to abuse young children in this way,” said United States Attorney Matthew Schneider. “We hope this sentencing will bring some closure to the innocent victims and their families who were so badly harmed by the defendant.”