FORT WASHINGTON, Md. -- A family of accused sexual predators and church leaders have been arrested on child sex abuse charges after allegedly sexually abusing four at-risk teenage girls who they were supposed to be helping.
Joshua Wright, Head Pastor of the Oxon Hill Assembly of Jesus Christ Church in Fort Washington, his son and minister, William Wright, and son-in-law and church leader, Donald Jackson have all been charged with child sex abuse charges stemming from 2001 to 2008.
According to police, the three were involved in a program called CHOP, which stands for Children Having Overcoming Power, designed to provide living accommodations in the homes of church members and education classes for at-risk youth.
I spoke with a former student of the church's school who did not want to be identified, but said that he is dumbfounded, calling the situation “heartbreaking”.
As it turns out, one of the suspects was his teacher.
"I'm still trying to wrap my head around it right now. I don't know what to believe at this point. I read the article. There is truth to the article but… I don't know what to believe."
William Wright reportedly served as a us Capitol police officer and was immediately taken off duty following this indictment.
Police say the victims came forward as adults to report the abuse that happened when they were between 15 and 18 years old.
The incidents, police say, occurred at the suspects' homes, parks, and the church.
Detectives are encouraging others who may have experienced abuse at the hands of these men to come forward.
The CHOP program ended in 2011.