The Attorney General’s office has filed a Motion for Leave to file a Second Amended Petition detail new evidence in the case against Agape Baptist Church/Agape Boarding School. This comes just days before a hearing scheduled for September 21st in Cedar County.
Representatives of Agape have also filed a Motion in Limine to exclude the testimony of Amy Kaelke, a Clinical Social Worker.
The evidence listed in the Motion to file a Second Amended Petition includes:
- Numerous current students have proactively approached the two Children’s Division workers that have been present at the Agape facility to observe the children. The students reported physical abuse by current Agape Employees at times before the Children’s Division workers were present.
- The recent abuse reports concerning current Agape employees are consistent with the reports made by former Agape students and provide evidence of a pattern of systemic abuse at Agape.
- Current Agape students have thanked the Children’s Division workers because Agape employees have not physically or verbally abused the students while the workers have been present.
- Multiple Agape employees listed on the employee roster give by Agape on September 8th, 2022 have not completed the required background check process. This is an independent ground to cease the operation of Agape and provide for the appropriate removal of the children there.
- DSS has received information that Agape employs individuals that are not listed on the September roster, thus it is unknown how many employees have failed to comply with background checks.
The Attorney Generals office also published the text of the Second Amended Petition that they are proposing to file.
In this petition, they claim that Agape employs and harbors other individuals who present an immediate health and safety concern for the children residing at Agape.
Presumably some of the information being relied on for this Seconded Amended Petition is coming from testimony that would be given by Amy Kealke that Agape has already filed to have excluded.
The state has repeatedly requested that Agape provide a list of all Adults who have access to Agape children, beyond just employees. This list would include volunteers, managers, adults residing at the property, and any other adults who may have unsupervised access to children at the facility.
Agape has repeatedly submitted documents that contain only the names of employees, and even titled the documents as such.
On the September 8th list, Agape provided a list that had five more names but did not distinguish any individuals status, such as who was an employee, adult resident, or volunteer.
It seems from the Petition, that the five individuals were adult residents residing at the facility with their spouses. These people are still required by Missouri law to comply with background check requirements.
The allegations of abuse outlined in the Proposed Second Amended Petition should make any reasonable person’s stomach turn.