Among the indignities 12-year-old Anthony Washington endured at the church camp overseen by Reverend Raphael Warnock: counselors who tossed urine on him and locked him outside his cabin overnight.
Washington, now 30, recounted the events in an interview with the Washington Free Beacon and said his experience at the camp resulted in a 2003 lawsuitthat ended two years later, when Washington says he and his family received a large financial settlement.
Washington’s account of the 2002 events provides the first direct insight into the alleged abuse and neglect that transpired at Camp Farthest Out, which Warnock oversaw as senior pastor of Maryland’s Douglas Memorial Community church, and raises new questions for the Democrat, who is currently vying for a Senate seat in Georgia.
Washington expressed surprise when he was told Warnock is currently running for U.S. Senate in Georgia. “I don’t think nobody like [Warnock] should be running for damn Senate nowhere, running a camp like that,” he told the Free Beacon. “He should not be running for government.”
Warnock has faced scrutiny over his 2002 arrest for allegedly obstructing a child abuse investigation by Maryland State Police that centered on the camp’s treatment of children. Washington’s account is buttressed by records from the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, obtained by the Free Beacon earlier this month, which indicated that campers were routinely left unsupervised; staffers were not subject to required criminal background check; and at least five cases of child abuse or neglect were brought against the camp’s director, who was ultimately forced to resign.
Warnock served as senior pastor at Baltimore’s Douglas Memorial Community Church from 2001 until around 2005. His job included overseeing the expansion of the church’s sleepaway camp, Camp Farthest Out, which served inner city children. Warnock’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment.