The defense lawyer representing former Richmond Outreach Center (ROC) megachurch pastor, Geronimo Aguilar, whom faces child sex charges and possible life in prison, was arrested last month for allegedly assaulting a woman within his home.
According to police reports, David L. Carlson was involved in an altercation with the woman, Lisa Kelley, who claimed Carlson rubbed her face against the carpet then dragged her across the floor. Carlson denied the allegations stating that Kelley is known to have problems with alcohol and prescription drugs.
Carlson was released on bail a short time after and is currently awaiting his next hearing which is set for mid-November.
"We adamantly deny that he is guilty of anything, and I'm very comfortable and confident the trial will establish that and he'll be found not guilty," said Judson W. Collier Jr., Carlson's law partner, according to Richmond, Va.- based Times Dispatch.
Since Aguilar's legal battles began earlier this year, this is the second incident involving one of his associates being arrested. Back in May, Jason Helmlinger, a former executive pastor at ROC megachurch who stepped down from his role following the allegations against Aguilar, was arrested and charged for making threats against another pastor. The charges in that case were dropped following a resolution from both parties.
Last month, Aguilar was indicted by a Texas grand jury on two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14 and on two counts of indecency with a child.
The two aggravated sexual assault charges are considered first-degree felonies, and if convicted, Aguilar could spend the rest of his life in prison. Furthermore, the indecency charges which are second-degree felonies carry a maximum sentence of 20 years.
Prior to beginning his ministry at ROC megachurch, Aguilar lived in Texas during the mid-1990s where he engaged in a sexual relationship with two underage girls. However, the two victims did not come forward against Aguilar until earlier this year which is when he was forced to resign from his role as senior pastor from the church.
Following those charges, several other women came forward to admit they too had been involved in sexual relations with Aguilar at one point.
Last month, ROC board members released a statement affirming that Aguilar also held extramarital affairs with members of their church and community. The board also hired two interim preachers, David Wheeler and Louis "PJ" Preston, from Lynchburg, Va., to interchangeably lead Six O'Clock ROC, the church's weekly Saturday night services, since four other pastors on the executive board stepped down along with Aguilar in May.
ROC church is currently continuing their nationwide search to fill the4senior pastor position.