Prison For Pastor Who Molested Girl

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(Memphis) A now-former COGIC pastor told his story for the first time when he pleaded guilty to molesting an underage family member for the past two years.

Thursday, Michael Bryant was sentenced to six years in prison as part of a plea deal.

He had hoped to get probation instead so he could get psychological help and work.

"I take full responsibility with everything that has happened, and I regret that it happened," said Bryant.

Bryant said he's sorry for fondling a 16-year-old family member as many as two times a month for two years.

In court, he told the judge he tried to go to a therapist, but was afraid they would call the cops.

Instead, the father of four turned to his church, Hour of Restoration COGIC in Hickory Hill.

"In every message that I preached over the last two years, I was talking about some of things I was involved in, but I was too ashamed to tell what was going on with me," said Bryant.

Bryant says he first admitted the crime to his wife at church. She never told police.

In December, his victim told an aunt, and Bryant was arrested for sexual battery by an authority figure.

The child had told her mother about the abuse a year before Bryant’s arrest, according to an affidavit, but the mother later said she decided to pray the abuse would stop.

Prosecutors chose not to prosecute the mother.

Family and friends came to court. Some took the stand, and, in tears, they supported Bryant and begged for mercy.

Bryant asked for probation, but the judge made it clear that would not happen.

He will be eligible for parole in two years.

Bryant has spent 78 days in jail. That will be applied to his sentence.

COGIC closed Bryant's church in January. DHS is offering counseling to the family member molested.


  • upaces88

    The mother “prayed” the abuse would stop?
    They should take that child away from her.
    As a mother, I can tell you, after I beat the hell out of him with a base ball bat, then maybe(?) I would call the police!

  • upaces88

    This happened years ago, I am now 65 and it is still vivid in my mind.
    I had just bought a new nightclub and was walking in the door for the first time. I saw this young man sitting at the bar with “4′ watered down drinks sitting in front of him. I motioned for the bartender to meet me in the liquor storage room to talk.

    I introduced myself as the new owner then started chewing him out THAT I COULD LOSE MY LIQUOR LICENSE for him “over serving” a customer.

    Then he told me this great story. Little girls in his neighborhood were being raped and beaten. He found out who it was, tracked him down and shot him (Dallas, Texas) He spent “2” years in prison. That was it!

    While in prison, the guards and other prisoners took good care of him. NO ONE was allowed to hurt him.

  • DirtyDova

    There is not enough space in 201 Poplar for all of the shady COGIC “Passahs” in this city.

  • Carl

    A HIckory Hill “pastor” in trouble with the law….I’m shocked. What’s next a shooting in Frayser? An assault in Orange Mound? Someone buying liquor in Whitehaven with an EBT card? Another day in the cesspool o f Little Detroit. Thank God, I moved away.

    • upaces88

      This happens more than is reported and/or makes the news.
      I can’t remember the amount of grown women I counseled at a Shelter for Battered Women who have this same history.

      It destroys their sense of self….then they tend to go looking for someone (a man) to validate them; and that’s when one form or another abuse happens all over again.

      It seems that perpetrators sense when a young woman has been abused, and they see her as an easy target.

  • Loretta

    He received probation when the so-called mother did NOTHING to stop him from abusing her daughter! And why the mother wasn’t arrested and charged in this matter boggles my mind…smh. I hope and pray the daughter is no longer in her mother’s custody and I hope the child receives sound psychological counseling.

    • upaces88

      When people start believing in their own ability to pray, worship and talk to the Man Upstairs vs. feeling as though the one man in the pulpit has all of the answers…things will change.

      It can’t be just one person. The entire congregation must do the same.

  • Reah

    His family and friends cried for him and begged for mercy? Each and everyone of you who support this pervert is just as sick in the head as he is no concern for the child that endured this pervert lustfullness for years. This a great example of people who love their pastors more than God. Shame on you all that support this low-life dog. When he get to jail somebody is going to make him bend over and touch his toes, and bust it wide open with a mop.

  • snapjudy

    Thankfully this child predator is behind bars and away from kids.
    Something to keep in mind-
    Child predators are very cunning and manipulative. They know every trick on how
    to groom, threaten, lie, and put the fear of god into their victims and
    sometimes even their family members. They also appear to do a lot of goods things, they can be very charismatic and you may think they would never harm a child. They have to be this way, in order to not get caught and to continue to abuse

    Sexual predators are often powerful and well-loved. It would be comforting if
    those who preyed on the vulnerable were obvious social misfits whose appearance
    would somehow set off alarm bells and give us the willies or the creeps. They
    rarely do. Usually, predators are among the last people we would suspect of
    sexually violating others. While they are grooming the child and even family members, they devote lots of time and energy building trust with them by giving them money and gifts. They tend to make the child feel that they are special and loved.

    Also, we must stop thinking that because a man is old, that somehow he’s automatically safe. It’s just irresponsible to endanger kids by assuming an adult is harmless simply because he or she may be losing hair, wearing glasses, using hearing aids or walking with a cane. These can be signs of advancing age, but they are not signs that an individual is safe around kids.

    It takes a lot of courage to come forward and take action about being sexually abused. This is not an easy thing to do, but it is extremely rare that a child predator has only one victim. Some have many. Child predators need to be kept far away from kids forever
    So let’s hope that anyone who may have knowledge about or may have been harmed by Michael Bryant, will find the courage to come forward and contact law enforcement, no matter how long ago it happened.

    Your silence only hurts, and by speaking up there is a chance for healing, exposing the truth, and therefore protecting others.
    Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511,
    SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, and members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers and increasingly, victims who were assaulted in a wide range of institutional settings like summer camps, athletic programs, Boy Scouts, etc.

  • Joe Censored

    “pastor”??? give me a freakin break. Half “da brotha’s” in Memphis are “pastors”… This clown needs to get a dose of his own medicine while locked up. Hope that young lady can put this ordeal behind her.

    • upaces88

      Joe, Believe me, when he goes to prison, he will have to live in Solitary Confinement. He will beg for it. Even the most hardened killers do NOT like Child Molesters regardless of race or religion.

  • love

    These fake preachers are going to rot in hell. These so called church folk, put all their trust & pay all their money to a man that puts his pants on like any other man. Preachers are just pimps that hide behind the Bible. The money need to do some time to…how can you go to church listen to this fool, knowing what he is doing to your daughter

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