Following an investigation into sexual assault allegations, a pastor in Rushville, Indiana, has been arrested on charges of child molestation.
72-year-old Garry Evans, Pastor of the Rushville Baptist Temple, was accused of at least a dozen felonies including molesting young children in his congregation. Police launched an investigation after a mother of a 3-year-old reached out to authorities and informed that her daughter was molested by Evans.
The little girl told her mother the pastor called her in his private room and offered to give her candy. He then pulled his pants down and asked her to touch his genitals. He later told the girl not to discuss it with anyone.
As news about the investigation spread, other mothers also came forward and informed authorities about the assault by Evans.
A mother said her 7- and 5-year-old daughters were molested by the pastor. Both the girls said Evans called them in his room to give them candy and then touched them inappropriately or asked them to touch him.
“There's not been a day gone by that we haven't done something associated with this case. There was another woman who came forward and said she had been victimized by the pastor of this church, Garry Evans, some 30 years ago in another community,” said Rushville Police Chief Craig Tucker.
He further said, “If you have a child who has exhibited unusual behavior after being in the vicinity of the church or this pastor and you believe there has been something that has happened to this child that might indicate something inappropriate happened, we definitely want them to give us a call.”
During the investigation, authorities interviewed girls under the age of 10. One of the girls said she was molested by Evans nearly “every time she went to the church.”
The pastor is now charged with three counts of child molestation, four counts of sexual battery and five counts of child solicitation. However, he is currently being held without bond at the Rush County Jail.
It is sad and sickening to imagine that a child is going through something like that at such a tender age. It is even more terrifying when these acts are done particularly by authority figures and the victim is too afraid to call out.
Thumbnail Credits: Reuters, Ahmad Masood