You know what they say about karma: She is a bitch. And today karma bitch-slapped so-called pastor Kenneth Adkins smack across his face.
Adkins, of Brunswick, Ga., gained notoriety last June 13, the day after 49 people were murdered and more than 50 others wounded in the attack on Orlando LGBT bar Pulse, when he tweeted: “been through so much with the Jacksonville homosexuals that I don’t see none of them as victims. I see them as getting what they deserve!!”
The next day Adkins claimed that his tweet wasn’t referring to those killed and wounded at Pulse, but instead to the LGBT community of Jacksonville, Fla., and others in that city who were advocating for the expansion of the city’s nondiscrimination laws to include protections for LGBT people. (Adkins had served as a panelist the previous December when Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry convened community forums to discuss LGBT people to the anti-discrimination law in Jacksonville.)
Of course, the “they got what they deserved” tweet came on the heels of a string of other anti-LGBT tweets by Adkins earlier that day, including one that declared: “Dear Gays, Go sit down somewhere. I know y’all want some special attention; yall are sinners who need Jesus. This was an attack on America.”
And the next day, Adkins sent Curry an email claiming the “they got what they deserved” tweet was “strictly meant for the Jacksonville group that has made my life a living hell since I served on the panel and opposed the HERO.” He added that he and his family “are the victims here when you understand what I have had to endure for standing up for the Church during the discussions.”
What the fuck ever.
As it turns out, Kenneth Adkins isn’t just a hater, he is a child molester, too.
Last August, just two months after his hateful tweets about the Pulse victims, Adkins was arrested on charges that he molested a boy and a girl at his church, both aged 15 at the time, in 2010.
It’s a sordid and convoluted tale, with the young man — now a specialist in the Army, stationed at Fort Leavenworth — coming forward last year to tell authorities that Adkins liked to watch him and his then-girlfriend have sex in the church office, at the beach and in Adkins’ car. Adkins and his attorney claimed the young man — who married another man last summer — was just trying to get back at Adkins for the things he said about the victims of the Pulse massacre, and for a loan the young man took out for Adkins and which Adkins never fully repaid.
Adkins’ trial started Monday, April 3. Today (Tuesday, April 11), the jury took about an hour to return a guilty verdict on all eight charges. His sentencing is set for April 25 and Adkins, now 57 and with a prior record of other crimes, faces the very real possibility of spending the rest of his life in prison.
Adkins’ attorney will be filing a motion for a new trial. And since the young woman in this story has steadfastly denied that any of the things the young man alleges ever happened, Adkins may get his new trial and he may eventually be acquitted.
And Adkins has also claimed to have a change of heart about LGBT people, telling a reporter for the Florida Times-Union just before the trial started that he now believes that everyone, including LGBT people, should be treated with dignity. He told the reporter, “I realized what I was doing was so anti-Bible — which was not loving people for who they are.”
Again, what the fuck ever.
For now, despite his claims of innocence and a change of heart, despite his appeals, he remains a convicted child molester. And karma continues to smile.