Scottsville pastor suspected of sexually assaulting teen - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

Scottsville pastor suspected of sexually assaulting teen in church

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SCOTTSVILLE, KY (WSMV) -

A southern Kentucky pastor is accused of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy in his church, and police are worried there may be more victims.

Roy Neal Yoakem is the pastor at the New Gospel Outreach Church in Scottsville, KY.

Authorities say they believe at least one alleged incident happened at the church, and they're investigating another alleged incident they believe occurred in Gallatin.

Gallatin police are expected to serve more warrants, including a charge of rape by an authority figure.

Yoakem's name was covered up on the sign outside the church on Friday, the day after the church's board appointed Stephen Bratcher as interim pastor.

"If the allegations are true, it's horrible," Bratcher said.

Yoakem was already on the sex offender registry for an incident that happened 11 years ago.

The victim in that 2003 case was an 8-year-old child. The church knew about that conviction and hired Yoakem anyway.

"When he first became pastor, about 2 1/2, 3 years ago, he informed the church of that right off," Bratcher said. "He explained that those allegations were false."

Investigators in Scottsville say they've now confiscated Yoakem's computer to analyze it for evidence as part of the current investigation.

The man's arrest has a lot of people in town wondering what church leaders were thinking.

"Children are an integral part of church. That they would allow him to be around children, it's pretty disturbing," said resident Phillip Pierce.

Bratcher says Yoakem wasn't in charge of any youth ministries.

"He said he was at peace with God," Bratcher said. "Everybody has a past."

Bratcher says he hopes people don't judge the worshipers because the church has been tainted by yet another scandal. In 2011, the church's long-time pastor, Billy Minix, was charged with embezzling $300,000.

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