Megachurch pastor Creflo Dollar has taken to his pulpit to deny punching and choking his 15-year-old daughter, telling his congregation the allegations made in a police report are nothing but "exaggeration and sensationalism." "I will say this emphatically: I should have never been arrested," Dollar said yesterday in his first public appearance two days after police charged him with misdemeanor counts of simple battery and cruelty to children.
The pastor got an enthusiastic ovation from the packed church as he took the pulpit at the World Changers Church International outside Atlanta. He addressed the criminal charges head-on for several minutes before moving on to his sermon. "I want you all to hear personally from me that all is well in the Dollar household," Dollar said. "The truth is that a family conversation with our youngest daughter got emotional," he said. "Things escalated from there," but "the truth is she was not choked, she was not punched."