I-TEAM: Oakland Athletics chaplain under fire as molestation accusations emerge against some former summer camp staff members

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ByDan Noyes via KGO logo
Saturday, June 10, 2017
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Some Assemblies of God church members are coming forward Friday to raise concerns about some former staff members at a Northern California summer camp -- a camp funded and run by the Chaplain for the Oakland A's.


Some Assemblies of God church members are coming forward Friday to raise concerns about some former staff members at a Northern California summer camp -- a camp funded and run by the Chaplain for the Oakland A's.

More than 30,000 kids have attended the camps over the years, and these church members say parents should know about complaints of sexual abuse from some of the former staff members, both at the camp facility and away from it.

The I-Team wants to make it clear that the Oakland A's are not affiliated with the camps founded by their longtime chaplain.

"Several years ago, I was trying to get Mark McGuire to come to chapel," said 61-year-old Donnie Moore, chaplain of the Oakland A's.

He's also an Assemblies of God evangelist.

Based out of his church in Stockton, Moore says more than 30,000 kids have attended his Radical Reality summer camps he founded 30 years ago.

But he's been dealing with some complaints his former camp director, Mark Holliday, sexually abused some children he met at the camp and the church.

"My friend woke me up and said,'We need to leave now. We need to leave right now,'" said church member Ron Montez.

Montez tells the ABC7 News I-Team he was 15 when he and a friend spent the night in the camp director's room, just before teen camp started in the summer of 1984. Montez says his friend complained Holliday fondled him.

"And my friend tried to stay away and get away, but Mark was pulling him closer," Montez told the I-Team.

The next morning, Montez says Holliday apologized to the boys, claiming it happened in his sleep. "And you know, he's sorry, and it's basically nothing and he didn't mean to do it."

Around the same timeframe, David Martin says Holliday molested him and his brother Tim on several occasions. They met Holliday through the camp, but he would take the boys on trips their parents couldn't afford.

Martin says there was one especially tense scene at a hotel near the Santa Cruz Boardwalk in 1984.

Noyes: "You two were arguing over who had to sleep in the bed with Mark because you didn't want to get molested."

Martin: "It's probably the thing that drives me the most because I still feel guilty to this day that my brother ended up sleeping in the bed."

The Martin brothers are now coming forward to say Donnie Moore knew about problems with his camp director long ago, but allowed him to remain at the camp.

"Anyone with half a brain knows that if you've molested kids, you probably shouldn't work with kids," said Martin.

Tim and other accusers from the '80s confronted Holliday at the Assemblies of God Sacramento headquarters in 2004 as Moore looked on.

"And Mark caved in front of everyone and admitted that he had done this, and Donnie looked stunned," Tim told the I-Team.

After that meeting, church officials ordered an evaluation for Holliday at a Christian mental health center. It concluded: "Being alone with children would not be in the best interest of anyone, in light of the behavior that he has admitted to."

And they ordered Moore to "not use Mark in camps for at least two years."

But camp photographer Wendi Montez says she took pictures less than a year later that show Moore and Holliday back at Richardson Springs for an Easter camp.

Moore also allowed Holliday to organize youth missions to Mexican orphanages. When the accusers found out Holliday was still working around kids, they pushed for another meeting with church officials in Dec. 2015.

Montez and his wife Wendi attended the meeting and say Holliday admitted to having more victims, but stopped in 1998.

Montez: "He can't remember their names because there is too many."

Noyes: "That's what he said at that meeting?"

Montez: "Yes."

Noyes: "That's scary."

Montez: "It's sickening."

"I was so disappointed in the fact that all the kids we'd brought in and all the kids that had been through this camp were put at risk," Montez added.

Assemblies of God officials finally banned Holliday from working for the church or in the camps, and sent a letter to Moore that said in part: "We have an obligation to both guard the children... as well as to remove an individual with these issues in their past."

A's chaplain and summer camp founder Moore posted video on his website saying the incidents took place before Holliday came to work as Radical Reality administrator 30 years ago.

But he urged victims to contact authorities.

"Your lives have been forever scarred by these obscene and irresponsible acts," said Moore.

The Butte County Sheriff's Office interviewed the Martin brothers and Montez, identifying a total of eight alleged victims for a child molestation investigation into Holliday, but recently closed the case citing the statute of limitations. The complaints came too late.

The I-Team asked the Assemblies of God to comment on the case, and they sent a statement that reads in part: "A thorough investigation was conducted, involving many interviews. After several months, the sheriff was not able to find even one individual to have been molested at a Radical Reality event."

The I-Team tried to speak to Moore about this -- after he did not return calls, he was found in Stockton. Moore wouldn't discuss it and his lawyer has not responded to the I-Team's simple inquiry -- Why would Moore allow Holliday to return to the camp after he admitted molesting children?

On video, Moore seems to suggest he didn't understand the extent of the alleged abuse until after the meeting in 2015.

"Bearing such deep emotional scars over the last few weeks," said Moore. "I finally discovered the complete truth of the situation."

By phone, Holliday declined to comment, so the I-Team caught up to him in Roseville.

He offered a general denial of the complaints and refused to talk further.


Part I of the I-Team's story discussed how a former camp director reportedly admitted to molesting children but was not prosecuted because the complaints came too late. But there are child sex abuse convictions of other men who once worked at the camps for Chaplain Donnie Moore.

Mishell Wolff met David Parish Prasad at Lakeview Assembly Church in Stockton. They dated during high school, married, and worked as youth pastors at the Radical Reality summer camps founded and run by Oakland A's chaplain Moore.

"We were counselors," said Wolff. "I had a girls cabin. He had a boys cabin."

But in 1998, away from the camp, Wolff watched as a mother questioned Prasad about sexually abusing her son and his friends. "His response was, 'I never meant to hurt them. I love them.'"

Prasad received a 12-year prison sentence after he confessed to molesting four boys, including two he met at Moore's camp.

Noyes: "And he talked about those boys spending the night in his cabin one at a time on different nights?"

Wolff: "Yes."

In court documents, his lawyer wrote, "Prasad himself was also the victim of sexual abuse at the hands of another member of" Lakeview Assembly, who also worked at Moore's camps.

Including Prasad, church members have identified three men who once worked at Moore's camps and were later convicted of child molestation. The victims in the other two cases did not come from Moore's summer camps.

Wolff believes Moore should now spread the word about some of the people he had working at his camps who went on to become convicted child molesters and a camp director who reportedly admitted sexually abusing children.

Noyes: "What should happen with Donnie Moore now?"

Wolff: "I think he should not be able to minister anymore. I also think he should go back and let all the kids at camps or missions trips or whatever he has been a part of -- let them know, 'Hey, there were child molesters at camp, parents have this conversation, even if your kids are grown.'"

Moore did not return the I-Team's phone calls. He refused to be interviewed, as did his attorney.

Click here for more stories byDan Noyes and the I-Team.