Tennessee pastor James “Ronnie” Messer, 46 is being charged for allegedly raping a 17-year old girl in his church.
The pastor in Morristown, was taken into custody after the teenage girl’s family reported the allegations.
The girl’s sister reportedly told police the 17-year-old girl rode with the pastor to the Crossway Worship Center, after their plans to go swimming in the Hartford area were derailed by swift and muddy water.
The pastor reportedly led the girl through the Worship Center’s rear entrance to a room across from the men’s restroom where he raped her.
James, who is married with children, told officers that they had sex but it was consensual. He was then transferred to the Cocke County jail and was released on bail on Tuesday.
James is facing charges of statutory rape, forcible rape and aggravated sexual battery by an authority figure.
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