Ex-youth pastor accused of sexual misconduct appears in court for theft charge

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FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — A former youth pastor is accused of paying a teen for sexual favors.

This is just one of several sexual misconduct allegations against William Townsend. Four girls under age of 18 came forward with stories of inappropriate touching, sexual text messages and cash in exchange for sexual favors.

Townsend appeared in court Friday on unrelated charges. He stood silently in a Fulton County courtroom Friday for a theft charge.

“This is your first appearance with regard to the recent felony arrest,” the judge said.

“There is a case that is pending out of Fulton County for another theft by taking,” a court staff person said.

MORE | Youth pastor accused of stealing $20,000 from apartment complex where he worked

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The court records show several closed and open theft cases against Townsend. He was indicted by a 2014 grand jury but never convicted for allegedly stealing 25 money orders from an apartment complex. The money orders ranged in value from $5,000 to $25,000. The district attorney later dropped the charges.

In 2017, he was indicted for allegedly stealing thousands of dollars from a Union City nursing and rehabilitation facility. Court records indicate the case is on hold.

According to a February arrest warrant application, Townsend allegedly embezzled nearly $24,000 from two Atlanta apartment complexes.

In court Friday, it was reported he was arrested in Henry County in August for another theft charge.

An East Point police report indicates that in August, Townsend allegedly stole $20,000 from the Greenwood at Marketplace Apartments, which is what led to his arrest Monday and appearing in court Friday.

“Just thought he was a good person,” said a former co-worker of Townsend. “A family man. God-fearing.”

However, there are other allegations that go beyond theft.

RELATED | Ex-youth pastor charged with stealing from apartment complex accused of sexual misconduct

“We saw it all. The text messages. We saw the images. The pictures of his private parts that he sent to a girl.”

11Alive confirmed multiple agencies are investigating Townsend for allegedly inappropriately touching multiple teenage girls, sending lewd text messages, and paying for sexual favors.

“There are two open investigations out of Henry County and Clayton County for this defendant,” a court staff member pointed out in court without publicly going into details.

The judge set Townsend’s signature bond at $50,000. He was also ordered to stay away from the Greenwood at Marketplace Apartments.

© 2018 WXIA



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