Boy, 14: Reverend accused in sex assault ‘lured with scripture’
A 14-year-old boy told Delta police his pastor, who runs churches in Delta, Glenwood Springs and Grand Junction, used “scriptures” to convince him it was OK to be touched inappropriately over more than a full year, according to allegations in an arrest warrant affidavit.
Pastor Jeremias Quintero, 42, of Delta, was being held at the Delta County Jail late Friday on $60,000 bond, one day after his arrest on suspicion of one count of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust.
The events leading to Quintero’s arrest started last week after his alleged victim said he’d been pondering “scriptures” he heard from his pastor, with whom the boy has been staying most weekends, according to the affidavit.
The boy said he’d told Quintero he didn’t want to be touched on his genitals, but Quintero, “lured me in with scriptures.”
“(Boy) said Jeremias would confuse him by telling him scriptures that he didn’t understand and explain what he was doing was okay because of the scriptures, but then told him he could not masturbate by himself at home or tell others because it was sin,” the affidavit said. “(Boy) advised it was because of the conflicting scriptures he decided to tell his mother about the inappropriate touches.”
The boy’s mother filed a report with Delta police Nov. 8 after her son disclosed the pastor’s alleged touching “over the course of the past year.”
They attended one of Quintero’s churches, Glenwood Apostolic, 931 Cooper Ave., in Glenwood Springs, while the boy’s mother had been allowing her son to occasionally stay with Quintero Thursdays through Sundays. The boy would travel Thursdays with the pastor to his home in Delta and ride back with the pastor to Glenwood Springs for Sunday worship, the affidavit said.
The arrangement had been in place since July 2012.
A website maintained by the Church of Jesus Christ Apostolic Faith Inc. also identifies churches associated with Quintero at 1061 Mesker St. in Delta, and 2880 B 1/2 Road in Grand Junction.
According to the affidavit, the boy described instances of Quintero touching his genitals when they were alone in the Delta church office. Sometimes, Quintero would turn on a laptop computer and they viewed pornography when this was happening, the affidavit said.
The investigation showed Quintero sent sexually explicit messages to the boy, using a Facebook account created for the Glenwood church. The pastor closed the Facebook account two days before he was questioned by Delta police.
Quintero explained the account closure this way:
“Parishioners who were not converts were ‘liking’ stuff that was against what the church stood for and it was showing up on the church page,” the pastor told a detective.
“Everytime I tried to ask Jeremias about touching (boy) he would deflect the answer and talked about (boy’s) bad home life,” the affidavit said. “Jeremias further explained Jeremias trusted (boy) because he knew the church’s (tenet) was for abstinence.”
The pastor admitted touching the boy’s “private parts” one time, during a church camp outing in Idaho when the boy was “doubled over in pain,” but otherwise denied any inappropriate conduct. He also denied showing the boy pornography.
“I asked Jeremias if I would find pornographic material on his computer when I searched it and he asked, ‘Is it a crime for me to have pornographic movies on my computer?’ I advised Jeremias it was if he was showing it to (boy) and he stated, ‘Oh.’ “
After repeated denials of touching the boy, Quintero eventually told detectives he’d touched the boy’s genitals “twice” in his office in Delta, while claiming the boy was in pain.
“I asked Jeremias if he had ever done this with anyone other than (boy) and he stated, ‘No!’ Jeremias maintained eye contact, spoke in a firm tone of voice, and did not let me finish my question before answering,” the detective wrote.