Acton Bowen facing additional sexual abuse charges in Etowah County
ETOWAH COUNTY, Ala. (WBMA) —
New sex charges were filed against evangelist Acton Bowen in Etowah County. The charges of 2nd degree Sodomy and 2nd degree Sexual Abuse are based off evidence from a sixth victim in the county according to the Etowah County Sheriff's Office.
The man, whose name was not released, told authorities Bowen sexually abused him during a three-year period which began in 2007. The man was 13-years-old at the time according to the Etowah County Sheriff's Office.
Bowen's bond now stands at $1.06 million. On Monday, his lawyers made an appeal to the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals to have his bond reduced again and for an Etowah County judge to be removed from a potential criminal trial.
Six people in Etowah County have come forward claiming they were abused by the well-know evangelist. A Jefferson County grand jury indicted Bowen on at least two of three sex charges related to testimony from a seventh potential victim. A boy between 12 and 16-years-old. Hoover Police described the boy as a family acquaintance. The alleged victims claim the pastor sexually abused them for months or years in complaints which date back from 2006 to as recently as April.
Prosecutors in Etowah County told a judge during Bowen's first court appearance that more potential victims may have been discovered in Orange Beach, Alabama and across state lines in Florida and Colorado. The FBI has now become involved into the investigation according to prosecutors.
Bowen is the founder of Acton Bowen Outreach Ministries. The Etowah County resident has served as a contributor on Fox News and has been reported to have served as a spiritual mentor to Hollywood celebrities including Justin Bieber. His defense attorneys admitted that Bowen's career in ministry is likely over regardless of the outcome of his criminal proceedings.
Bowen began working as a youth minister nearly a decade ago at the CrossPoint Community Church before it was re-opened under a new name. He worked closely at the church with students from Coosa Christian School where he also graduated. In an exclusive interview with ABC 33/40 News, Bowen's father said his son spent much of his adult life mentoring young children.
"Parents encourage their children to be in Acton's presence and Acton's guidance and Acton's ministry because Acton has a passion for what he does and it's a God-given gift."
Prosecutors asked Bowen in court if he was aware his son had left CrossPoint due to allegations regarding pornography. He said he was unaware of the claims.