Pastor Arrested For Molesting Underage Church Members

| by Zara Zhi
Jose MoralesJose Morales

An Arizona pastor allegedly molested a number of children -- including a 13-year-old girl he had unlawfully married.

Jose Morales, 49, was arrested at his home in Pheonix after the mother of one of his victims notified authorities. The 17-year-old victim had been harming herself after being sexually abused by Morales five years earlier, according to her mom.

Although the investigation is ongoing, detectives have found that Morales molested more than five girls over a 30-year period. The pastor even impregnated one of his victims when she was 13 years of age.

One 18-year-old church member came forward and reported that Morales ensnared her and then sexually attacked her in a home, reports KNXV.

When questioned by authorities, Morales confessed to having a sexual relationship with an 18-year-old girl who went to his church. 

Another victim reported that Morales molested her from ages 7 to 12 and was even molested while in a pool as she was swimming with him.

Morales came to Arizona in 1986 at the age of 19. He was already "dating" an 8-year-old girl, whom he married in Mexico when she turned 10. Three years later, he impregnated the girl, according to Daily Mail.

Police said many of his victims were members of his church, Iglesia Impacto De Fe, which has been shut down since the charges came to light.

WXIA reports that on Sept. 16, another pastor was arrested and charged with child molestation and rape after an investigation. The allegations stem from an interview of a 10-year-old victim. The child said pastor David Wells sexually abused her while staying at The Garden, a recovery center in Smyrna, Georgia.

The Garden, which "is home to about 60 women and 40 children that have been rescued from homelessness or broken situations," was founded by Wells back in 2008.

Sources: KNXV, Daily Mail, WXIA / Photo credit: Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office via Daily Mail

Do these charges surprise you?
Yes - 0%
Yes - 0%