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Pastor Says Ordeal Is Over

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The alleged victim was a 16-year-old girl who had been in the Ellisons' custody for four years, police said. She alleged the incidents occurred during that time.

Because of Ellison's ties to the Henrico County community, where he is pastor of Essex Village Community Church and founder of its community-outreach and child-care centers, Chesterfield County prosecutor Duncan Minton took over the case.

But after a series of legal maneuvers, the charges were dropped. Minton was out sick and unable to be reached. Ellison's attorney, Michael Herring, also did not return a phone call by press time.

Ellison says now the healing can begin. He's focusing on the low-income neighborhoods he serves. And he hopes to restore his high-profile image as a conservative black preacher. — Brandon Walters

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