Local pastor set to take plea deal may not have to register as sex offender

Concho Valley [San Angelo, TX]

September 15, 2023

By Dusty Ellis

According to court documents, a local pastor is set to plead guilty to the felony charge of indecency with a child under the age of 14 by sexual contact in the Tom Green County Courthouse.

Northside Church of Christ Pastor Alan Murphy is set to plead guilty as a part of a plea bargain with a pretrial diversion which may allow Murphy to avoid having to register as a sex offender.

A pretrial diversion is a program that is an alternative to prosecution. This would allow the defendant to avoid being charged or having charges dropped upon the completion of it. According to reports filed in Tom Green County, Murphy will have to pay a $500 fee upfront and serve two years of probation. If he completes the program, he will not be required to register as a sex offender.

Additionally, Murphy would be allowed to pursue having the charges erased from his criminal record and still be allowed to continue preaching.

The family of the victim is requesting that the plea bargain be retracted and/or require Murphy to register as a sex offender.

“Mr. Murphy is involved in the community,” said the victim’s mother. “He is a pastor, a grandfather, and he hosts huge Christmas light demonstrations each year in Grape Creek where he invited families with children to come see his displays. He is around children and parents have the right to know his history so they can make informed decisions about bringing their kids around him.”

The mother of the victim told CVHP her daughter cried when the District Attorney’s Office informed them of their decision.

“She wanted to know why the DA didn’t believe her,” said the victim’s mother, “Before I decided to reach out to the media, I spoke with her first and she said ‘Mom people need to know so he can’t do this to anyone else.’ My daughter is the bravest person I know, and I am disgusted that the DA took justice away from her.”

Concho Valley Homepage has reached out to Northside Church of Christ for a statement but did not receive one by the time of publication.