Arkansas pastor found guilty of assaulting teens in congregation
BENTONVILLE, ARK —
An Arkansas church pastor has been found guilty of molesting two teen girls who attended his parish in Avoca.
Deputies arrested 60-year-old Cesar Lopez in 2016 and charged him with two counts of second-degree sexual assault.
On April 6th 2016, officers received a tip that Lopez had molested the girls, who were ages 15 and 16, according to a warrant affidavit. The girls said Lopez would touch them inappropriately when he would hug them.
One girl told police that in 2015, Lopez took her into a back room and asked her to lift her dress, and then begun to touch her inappropriately. The girl said she told a family member about the incident, and a meeting was set up with Lopez, who apologized.
Officers attempted to contact Lopez on April 13th, but he didn't show up to a meeting.
A Benton County jury found Lopez guilty of Sexual Assault in the second degree. The Jury recommended a prison sentence of 15 years.