Two former employees at Victory Christian Center in Tulsa have now been charged with sex crimes and five employees are accused of not reporting the allegations.
Tulsa, Oklahoma -
A 23-year-old intern at Victory Christian Center has been charged with making a lewd or indecent proposal to a child, investigators said.
Prosecutors filed charges against Israel Shalom Castillo on Monday. Castillo is accused of asking a 15-year-old to have sex with him, according to court documents. He also was charged with using a computer to facilitate a sex crime.
Child abuse investigators told KTUL.com on Tuesday that Castillo was working as an intern at the south Tulsa church at the time he approached the teenage girl.
The charges against Castillo stem from an investigation into allegations that a former employee at Victory sexually violated two underage girls at a summer camp at the church, investigators said.
Chris Denman was arraigned last week on charges of rape of a minor under 14 years old, forcible oral sodomy of a minor under 14 years old, lewd molestation and use of a computer to facilitate a sex crime.
Five Victory Christian Center employees, including Pastor Sharon Daugherty's son and daughter-in-law, have been charged with failure to report child abuse. Prosecutors said church officials knew about the allegations against Denman for two weeks before calling authorities.
Victory Christian issued a statement Monday evening saying all five employees have been suspended for not following the church's policy on reporting abuse or neglect.
A former employee of Victory Christian Center, Israel Castillo, was charged yesterday with lewd or indecent proposal to a child and use of a computer to facilitate a sex crime.
Victory Christian issued a statement on Tuesday stating:
"In the course of investigating allegations of a rape at the Victory Christian Center campus, our staff discovered that Castillo was inappropriately communicating with a member of the church's youth group. This employee was fired along with Chris Denman on Aug. 24. Police reports on both incidents were completed on Aug. 30. The staff members involved in the internal investigation of Denman and Castillo were charged on Monday with failure to report abuse or neglect of a child under 18. Their response was not in accordance with the church's written policy on reporting suspected child abuse to the Department of Human Services. Prior to their hiring, Denman and Castillo both passed a screening process that included personal references and a nationwide background check. No history of any criminal activity was found. Along with working with DHS to evaluate our reporting process, Victory Christian Center will perform a full review of our policies to ensure the safety of our children and youth."
Founded in 1981 by Billy Joe and Sharon Daugherty, Victory Christian Center is one of the largest churches in the Tulsa area with a membership of about 17,000.