Source: Truth Wins Out
Truth Wins Out is reporting that Chris Austin, a longtime ex-gay counselor from Irving, Texas, was convicted today of sexually assaulting a client. Austin, a previous speaker for both Evergreen International and the National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), has been accused of sexual assault on a client before. In 2001, Mark Hufford made similar accusations:
Hufford accused Austin of engaging in improper sexual behavior that included “oral copulation and fondling” during counseling sessions that spanned more than a year. The psychologist, who also teaches in the church’s Sunday School, had convinced Hufford to participate in “touch therapy.” The therapy gradually progressed to nude sessions and physical intimacy, he said.
Ex-Gay Watch reported in 2003 when Hufford and Austin dropped cross civil suits to allow Hufford to get on with his life. Today’s conviction would seem to vindicate Hufford and his struggle of a few years ago.
TWO reports that Austin was sentenced to 10 years in prison, but received seven years probation, had to register as a sex offender and was ordered to pay a $2,500 fine.
When XGW called today to ask Austin for a comment on his conviction, he picked up halfway through the outgoing message on his answering machine with “Dr. Austin, Counseling Center.” We verified that it was indeed Chris Austin, but he declined to discuss the matter and hung up.