LEESBURG, Va. - Fifteen years after their investigation into a child sexual abuse case started, the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office announced a popular church deacon has been arrested.
Kevin O'Connor, a 62-year-old deacon at Calvary Temple in Sterling, was first accused of sexually abusing a child in May 2003.
The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office has been tight-lipped about why it took 15 years for an arrest to be made in the case. Officials would only say new information has surfaced over the years.
O'Connor has been charged with sexual assault by force, two counts of aggravated sexual battery, two counts of aggravated sexual battery while incapacitated (asleep) and two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child.
Investigators said the victim was between 13 and 15 years old when the alleged abuse happened. We are told the victim is a family member who also attended Calvary Temple.
The sexual abuse was first reported in 2003, but never prosecuted due to insufficient evidence. In 2012, the case was re-examined after new details surfaced through numerous interviews that led to O'Connor's arrest this week.
“To be honest, I was relieved because as the parent of a 3-year-old, if there is any allegations of sex abuse, I want that investigated, and if there is anything that comes out of it, it's important that we get law enforcement involved,” said one woman who said she attended Calvary Temple twice, but wanted to remain anonymous fearing possible retaliation. “As a parent, you want to make sure you protect your kids.”
She said she stopped going to the church after hearing about child sex abuse allegations.
“My concern is why would it take 15 years?” she said. “Who was being protected? For the longest time, I have seen protesters outside the church saying families that were separated, there were kids cleaning, that they had been abused in the church. And worst of all is when I attempted to attend some of their services, they had a very aggressive recruitment policy.”
Loudoun County Sheriff Mike Chapman declined to speak to FOX 5 about the case, but officials said that the supervisor of the Criminal Investigation Division back in 2003 was a member of Calvary Temple. That supervisor has since transferred to the Traffic Division and the sheriff's office said it did not prompt a delay in arresting O’Connor.
The sheriff's office is continuing its investigation into Calvary Temple.
O'Connor is being held Loudoun County Adult Detention Center without bond.