- (Photo: facebook/Richmond Outreach Center)
A Texas grand jury on Friday indicted Geronimo Aguilar, the founder and former pastor of Virginia's Richmond Outreach Center (ROC) megachurch, on two counts of aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14. The indictment reveals a graphic account of sexual abuse.
The first-degree felony carries a maximum punishment of life in prison, CBS 6 reported.
The jury also indicted Aguilar, who is married and the father of five children, on two counts of indecency with a child. The second-degree felony is punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Aguilar intentionally or knowingly caused the penetration of the sexual organ of a child younger than 14, the indictment said, referring to a December 1995 incident in Tarrant County. Aguilar inserted his finger into her sexual organ, it added.
Aguilar, also known as "Pastor G," was extradited in May to Texas for seven felony charges, including sexual assault of two sisters under age 14 before he founded the ROC ministry.
After those charges were made, several women came forward and claimed they had sex with Pastor G.
"He brought us alcohol, we got drunk and the rest is history," Amber Baker, who is a member or ROC church, had told 8News. "I had just turned 18. We had sex… It was wrong. Just because it is not illegal doesn't mean it is not wrong and he was my pastor I moved to Richmond to serve God." Baker has also claimed Pastor G had sex with other members of her family. "My mother, my aunt and myself have all been involved with him sexually."
However, Friday's indictment only concerns one of the alleged victims. Other cases are yet to go before the grand jury.
Pastor G and three other pastors – Pastor Jason Helmlinger, Pastor Andrew Delgado and Pastor Matthew Aguilar – resigned from the church in June. Only Pastor G was arrested or linked to the sexual abuse case.
The Board of Directors at Six O'Clock ROC, the church's weekly church service, addressed allegations against Pastor G last weekend.
"We have all been going through a time of grieving and hurt over the moral failings of our former Senior Pastor," the Board said in a statement. "After our former pastor was arrested related to charges in Texas, the Board of Directors became aware of his multiple extramarital affairs with members of our church and community," the Board said. "This Biblically disqualified him from the office of pastor and leadership of The ROC in any capacity."
The Board also said the church has been in the preparation stages of "a nationwide search for God's man to pastor our church and to lead us as we continue to fulfill our mission of Changing Lives, Making Life Changers."
Last month, the church hired two interim preachers, David Wheeler and Louis "PJ" Preston, from Lynchburg, Va., to interchangeably lead Six O'Clock ROC. They also took on the responsibility to prepare the congregation for a transition to a new head leader.