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Virginia Pastor Arrested for Alleged Abuse of a Minor

The Victory Church pastor is accused of sexually abusing a minor between 13-14 years old

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A pastor in Ruckersville, Virginia, was arrested Thursday (Feb. 1) on charges related to alleged abuse of a minor.

Rodney Locklear preaching in 2023 / Video screenshot @Victory Church Ruckersville

Senior Pastor of Victory Church, Rodney Locklear, 47, was arrested on charges of abduction with intent to defile and aggravated sexual battery of a child. As pastor at the church, Locklear also led the children’s Wednesday night Bible study classes.

“We had a kid reach out to a family friend. Word got to us and we started our investigation a couple of days ago,” Matthew Harlow, an investigator with the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, told CBS 19.

That tip led to a joint investigation between the Greene County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Marshall’s Fugitive Task Force.

Given Locklear’s access to children through his position, the Greene County Sheriff’s Office is asking parents to have conversations with their children.

“Because of the position that Mr. Locklear was in, we just want to make sure that the community is safe,” said head of investigations Kevin Freid. “At the end of the day turn the TV off, shut the phones off. Talk to your kids about what inappropriate touching means. What personal space boundaries are.”

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The identity of the victim, who is between 13-14 years old, remains confidential.

Locklear will be held at the Central Virginia Regional Jail and will be kept there until he appears in court this week to determine his bond.

EDITOR’S NOTE:  Why does MinistryWatch report on sex crimes? These stories are tough to read and sometimes even tougher to report, but we think they are vital to our mission to bring transparency, accountability, and credibility to the evangelical church. To read more about why and how we report these stories, read “Why MinistryWatch Reports On Sex Crimes.” You can find that story here.

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Daniel Ritchie

Daniel Ritchie is an evangelist, speaker and author from Wake Forest, NC. He has spoken nationally and internationally to churches, colleges, seminaries, conferences and professional sports teams. He is the author of two books - My Affliction for His Glory & Endure. He is a husband to Heather and daddy of two children.