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Former Youth Pastor Arrested On Child Seduction Charges
Updated October 4, 2016 4:26 PM | Filed under: Crime
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(MITCHELL) - A Mitchell man was arrested Friday after police say he made sexual advances against a teenage girl while he was a youth minister at Mitchell Church of Christ.

Police arrested 45-year-old Gary Spear on a felony charge of child seduction.

According to a Lawrence County Superior Court II probable cause affidavit, on May 2 a woman reported to the Lawrence County Police Department that she had been assaulted by Spear. The incidents happened between 2011 and 2013 when she was between 16 and 18 years old.

In 2010, the teen was receiving counseling from Spear because her parents were getting a divorce. The victim told police that the alleged incidents happened during those weekly counseling sessions when Spear was the youth minister at Mitchell Church of Christ.

Spear told the girl that he considered her as his daughter and, as a daughter, she should give him hugs and kisses. The woman reported Spear would lay on top of her and he would have her sit on his lap while he kissed her. She also claims Spear fondled and touched her inappropriately during these incidents that happened several times a week in the church, at his home and in his truck.

Spear was booked into the Lawrence County jail at 6:22 p.m. on Friday. He posted a $755 cash bond the same day.

Judge William Sleva, of Lawrence Superior Court II, has disqualified himself from the case. The case will be transferred to Lawrence Superior Court I with Judge Michael Robbins presiding over it.

Spear served as the community engagement facilitator for the Mitchell Community Public Library. He was also the co-host and director of Hoosier Hometown Live, a popular variety radio show. He is no longer employed at the library. The Hoosier Hometown Live radio show for November 12, 2016 has been canceled.



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