On Friday, the former youth minister of The River Church was indicted for six sex crimes
A former youth minister at The River Church was charged with six sex crimes on Friday.
William Stefan Wahl, 28, of the Port Huron man, was arraigned on Friday on two counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct under the age of 13, two counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct between the ages of 13 and 16, distributing obscene material to children, aggravated indecent assault and using computers to commit a crime.
His bail was set at $25,000 cash/bail.
Wahl is accused of sexually abusing four child victims he had a relationship with through The River, St. Clair County Sheriff Mat King said. King identified Wahl as a former church youth minister.
King said Friday morning the man was arrested around midnight at a residence in the 1500 block of Palmer Court.
Stephen Rabaut, Wahl’s attorney, said Wahl intended to surrender for his arraignment. The police investigation was opened in November 2021.
St. Clair County Assistant District Attorney Cailin Wilson said the alleged incidents took place between 2014 and 2021, when Wahl was over 17 and with victims between the ages of 10 and 17.
In response to the allegations, River Church Co-Senior Pastor Bill Wahl sent a press release dated Nov. 2, 2021, stating that the River Church Board of Elders had been notified of a possible incident of child abuse perpetrated by an employee. against two minors.
The council immediately opened an investigation into the facts, ensuring that all the parents involved had been informed. Within hours, the employee was terminated and the board filed a report with the appropriate authorities to investigate the matter, according to the press release.
The River Ministry Center is currently based in Kimball, according to its website.
He is scheduled for a probable cause hearing at 9 a.m. on Feb. 1 and a review hearing at 1:30 p.m. on Feb. 8 before Judge Mona Armstrong of the St. Clair County District Court.
King said it’s possible there are other victims linked to Wahl who haven’t yet come forward. Anyone who thinks they may have been a victim should contact the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Detachment. Kelsey Wade at (810) 987-1738.
Contact Laura Fitzgerald at (810) 941-7072 or email@example.com.