Timothy L. Dampier, arrested earlier this month after Seattle police interviewed him at his job at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue, faced three new charges, for a total of eight counts of sex crimes against minors, during an arraignment Monday morning in King County Superior Court in Seattle.
Dampier, 34, of Seattle, who has had jobs involving youth since at least 2001 and is a minister and musician at a number of Seattle churches, pleaded not guilty to all eight counts, which King County prosecutors say took place between 2001 and 2011, according to charging documents. Prosecutors say that the victims were between 11 and 17 years old.
People who have known Dampier filled the courtroom gallery, including Damon Lyons, who said he also is a church minister.
Lyons, who said he grew up with Dampier, said that he did not want Dampier to become abandoned after the allegations, and he was there to show support and keep him in his prayers.
"There is no win-win situation here at all. I think that as a friend, and the families, and, as well, minister Tim Dampier, we are all losing here," Lyons said outside the courtroom.
"We are talking about a man who has been a blessing to the community and that has served in the community for a number of years. He sings under the anointing of God. He is highly anointed. He’s very gifted and not only that, he has been a great service to the community and to churches that he’s in, either as a minister in song or in the word of God. There is a loss here on both sides."
Dampier was at his job at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue, which suspended him after the investigation, according to charging documents.
Dampier met many of the youth named in the court papers through his work as a minister and musician at a number of churches in the Seattle area. He also worked at youth group homes, according to charging papers.
Dampier initially faced charges of second-degree child rape, first-degree child molestation, and three counts of second-degree child molestation in incidents involving three boys, who were between the ages of 11 and 13 at the time of the alleged abuse. The King County prosecutor's office added charge of third-degree child molestation, sexual exploitation of a minor, and communication with a minor for immoral purposes, according to charging papers for incidents that allegedly took place between 2006 and 2011.
The new charges involve videos that investigators say they found in Dampier's home and text messages of a sexual nature to two 15-year-old boys that investigators say were found on Dampier's phone, according to charging papers.
Investigators say that more youth could be involved. At least two teenagers who met Dampier through the Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue spent the night at Dampier's home in Seattle as recently as March, but Dampier denies any abuse took place and no charges have been filed in connection to those youths, according to the charging documents.
A spokesperson for the Boys and Girls Clubs couldn't be reached for comment Monday morning, and police documents do not say what position Dampier has held there.
The investigation was launched after one of the victims, now 21, went to the minister of a Seattle Central Area church and told him that Dampier had abused him. The victim had heard that Dampier was hired as a musician by that church and told the minister he was concerned about the safety of other children. The minister notified Seattle Police of the man’s report.
That victim told investigators he had previously reported the abuse to Dampier’s minister, the Rev. Robert Manaway of the Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church, but no charges were filed following a meeting Manaway facilitated between the victim and Dampier last October, the documents say.
Another boy, now 19, told investigators that Dampier had two teenage boys, whom he met through the Boys and Girls Club, spend the night at his Seattle home in March, and that at least one of them slept in Dampier’s bed. The 19-year-old denied being abused, and said he did not know if the teens he witnessed at Dampier’s home had been abused.
Police interviewed Dampier at the Boys and Girls Clubs on May 4, at which time he admitted to several of the allegations, including fondling two of the victims, the charging documents said. He acknowledged secretly videotaping another child masturbating, but said it was made accidentally.
Dampier also acknowledged that two teens, ages 14 and 15, recently spent the night at his home and that he had met them through the Boys and Girls Clubs, but he denied that any sexual abuse took place.
According to the police report, Dampier has held numerous positions that put him in contact with minors, including as a counselor at group homes, as a licensed foster parent, as a musician in Seattle-area churches, and as an employee of various charitable organizations.
Given that Dampier told police that he has engaged in a sexual game with children whose names he couldn’t remember and his extensive contacts with multiple children, police anticipate that numerous other victims exist, and the investigation is ongoing, according to charging papers.
Dampier has been ordered to have no contact with children or with nearly a dozen potential witnesses and victims, and that he have no contact with staff from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue or be on the premises of any of its facilities. He is being held at King County jail in lieu of $500,000 bond.