A married pastor has been arrested after allegedly drugging, grooming, and then raping a 15-year-old girl in Texas.
Lead Pastor of First Assembly of God in Vernon, Texas, Brian Pounds, 45, has been charged with sexual assault of a child and delivery of a controlled substance to a child, according to his redacted arrest warrant.
Local police say that they spoke with the girl's mother on 1 July when she was searching for her daughter at a motel. Pounds was also at the total and told the police that he was there helping a person in need. A room had been rented at the establishment in the name of the church.
The girl, however, was not found at the motel, but later appeared at a nearby Walmart. When questioned by police, the girl said that she had been smoking methamphetamine at the motel with the church pastor and that he had sex with her.
She claims that the pastor had been having sex with her for about a month, ever since they had a first encounter at his church where he was supposed to be giving her spiritual counsel.
The girl was then hospitalised "with medical complications from smoking methamphetamine."
A forensic interview was subsequently held where she gave additional details if what had transpired over the past month.
The affidavit stated: "Pounds began the grooming process by getting Jane Doe a job cleaning houses for elderly people.
"Pounds then began to meet Jane Doe at his church ... in Vernon. Pounds started offering Jane Doe methamphetamine at the church. Pounds continued to meet with Jane Doe at the church for what Jane Doe described as counselling.
"Jane Doe said Pounds would offer her methamphetamine while at the church."
It is alleged that the teenager had two sexual encounters with the pastor at the church, and that he would even choke her during the sexual acts.
The affidavit continued: "Pounds gave her methamphetamine to smoke and get high. Jane Doe said Pounds had sex with her [redacted] at the [redacted] Jane Doe said during the course of having sexual intercourse Pounds placed both hands on her neck and choked her."
Pounds is being held in Wichita County Jail with bail set at $200,000.