Pastor of St. Pete Church Charged with Molesting Teenage Girl

By Stephen Thompson
Tampa Tribune
April 14, 2009

ST. PETERSBURG - A longtime St. Petersburg pastor was arrested Monday on charges he repeatedly molested a 15-year-old girl on church property and then sexually assaulted her after she turned 17.

Evans Justice Bacon, 58, was charged with sexual battery, lewd and lascivious molestation, and lewd and lascivious conduct, according to records at the Pinellas County Jail.

Evans Justice Bacon

Bacon has been the president of the New Life Tabernacle Church, 342 11th St. N., for at least 15 years, said Detective Joe Bross of the St. Petersburg Police Department. He lives in Sanford, however, and apparently commuted for services.

He was arrested in Sanford.

The victim was a member of the church.

Between June 1, 2005, and Jan. 21, 2006, Bacon touched the girl inappropriately repeatedly, Bross said. He is also accused of taking photographs of the girl's genitals and having the girl take pictures of her genitals for him, Bross said.

After the girl turned 17 in 2007, Bacon asked the girl if he could commit a particular sexual act, was denied, then committed the act anyway, Bross said. In time, the girl told her mother, and her mother contacted authorities, Bross said.

Investigators said they are concerned that Bacon may have done the same thing to other children.

Those with information about Bacon's behavior can call Bross at (727) 893-4979.

Reporter Stephen Thompson can be reached at (727) 451-2336.


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