was an LDS church member in Iowa; convicted of four misdemeanor counts related to child sexual abuse and exploitation; 2023: registered sex offender living in Boone, Iowa

Case Summary

James Raborn was a Mormon church member in Iowa. He served for a time as young men’s president in his LDS ward.

from 3 News Now Omaha on 2016-02-17:

“A Pottawattamie County man is out on bond accused of using his position to coax minors into sex. James Raborn, 27, was booked into the Pottawattamie County Jail February 12.

Court records show he faces four counts of sexual exploitation of a minor by counselor or therapist from an incident that happened July 4, 2015. He is also charged with giving obscene material to minors and having child porn.

A report by ‘The Daily Nonpareil’ said Raborn had ties to the local LDS church. An LDS spokesperson told KMTV Wednesday they were looking into his ties, but cited the church’s zero tolerance policy regarding such acts.

Raborn paid a $6,500 bond. Pottawattamie county jail officials said he was released February 13.

KMTV reached Raborn at an Oakland, Iowa home Wednesday night. He would not comment on the charges or his connection to the LDS Church.

His next court appearance is March 9 in Council Bluffs.”

  1. Iowa man allegedly used position to exploit...
    view source details | 17 Feb 2016 | 3 News Now Omaha
  2. Former LDS leader sentenced for sending sexual images to teen girls
    view source details | 17 Aug 2016 | Daily Nonpareil (Council Bluffs, Iowa)
  3. Raborn, James Wesley Samuel
    view source details | 14 Aug 2023 | Iowa Sex Offender Registry
Sources excerpts
  • Iowa man allegedly used position to exploit...
    Source type: News article
    Publisher: 3 News Now Omaha
    Date published/accessed: 17 Feb 2016
    archive 1 | archive 2
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    Former LDS leader sentenced for sending sexual images to teen girls
    Source type: News article
    Publisher: Daily Nonpareil (Council Bluffs, Iowa)
    Date published/accessed: 17 Aug 2016
    archive 1 | archive 2

    An Oakland man will spend four months in jail after pleading guilty to four misdemeanor sexual abuse charges.

    On July 28, James Raborn, 27, pleaded guilty to two amended counts of lascivious acts with minor, and single counts of disseminating sexual materials to a minor and sexual exploitation of a minor, all misdemeanors.

    On Tuesday morning, Raborn was sentenced to five years in prison. Raborn is married with children, and his wife was in the courtroom on Tuesday.

    As part of the plea agreement, Fourth Judicial District Judge Mark Eveloff suspended all but 120 days of the sentence. Starting at 6 p.m. on Sept. 1, Raborn will serve 120 days in the Pottawattamie County Jail.

    Raborn was also placed on supervised probation for two years and, after his jail sentence, he will be need to finish the sex offender treatment program at the Fourth Judicial District’s Residential Treatment Facility in Council Bluffs.

    Initially, Raborn was charged with two felony counts of sexual exploitation by a counselor or therapist. According to court documents, Raborn worked as a local ward young men president for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    According to the LDS webpage, the ward young men president serves as a member of the ward priesthood executive committee and the ward council. As a member of this committee and council, he participates in efforts to build faith and strengthen individuals and families. Investigators interviewed a representative with the LDS church who said that Raborn was a member of its clergy.

    Investigators with the Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office said that Raborn met the two 16-year-old girls in his role as ward young men president.

    Since Raborn’s arrest on Feb. 12, his attorney, Jordan Glaser, has been arguing that ward young men president is an untrained position with little power and doesn’t meet the criteria of sexual exploitation by a counselor or therapist. Glaser said Raborn no longer holds any leadership position with the church.

    Glaser added that while 16 is the age of consent in Iowa, the teen girls would have had to be 18 for Raborn to legally send the girls sexual images.

    Raborn will have to register as a sex offender and be placed on special parole for the next 10 years.

    Eveloff also approved a no-contact order, which bans Raborn from contacting the victims for five years. If Raborn violates the terms of probation, he could be sentenced to up to five years in prison.

    During the next 30 days, the Pottawattamie County Attorney’s Office will decide if Raborn will have to pay restitution to the victims. Assistant Pottawattamie County Attorney Shelly Sudmann, who prosecuted the case, said members of the victims’ families have taken time off work to help the victims deal with the incidents.

  • back to online sources list
    Raborn, James Wesley Samuel
    Source type: News article
    Publisher: Iowa Sex Offender Registry
    Date published/accessed: 14 Aug 2023
    archive 1 | archive 2

Mormon Sexual Abuse Map

International map of locations where active members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints perpetrated or allegedly perpetrated sexual abuse or other sex crimes, or where LDS leaders failed or allegedly failed to help abuse survivors.