Former Lexington Pastor Arrested and Accused of Sex Crimes

Former Lexington pastor arrested and accused of sex crimes

In Lexington, a shocking allegation has surfaced. A former pastor stands accused of multiple sex crimes per a report from Gray Television station WKYT. According to the details from the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office, 47-year-old Zachary King was arrested on Monday. He now faces several charges of rape, sodomy, and sexual abuse that stem from a prolonged sexual relationship with a minor.

Let’s examine the facts of this alleged abuse in Kentucky.

The Allegations Against a Local Pastor

According to the court documents, King admitted to engaging in a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old victim beginning in January 2023 and lasting until April 2024. The alleged crimes took place at his home, the minor’s home, and the former pastor’s church.

King is charged with first- and third-degree rape, first- and third-degree sodomy, first-degree sexual abuse, and procuring or promoting the use of a minor by electronic means.

The Kentucky Office of the Attorney General confirmed that, prior to his arrest, King served as the executive pastor at LexCity Church. According to the claims, this appears to be another case of a person using their authority as a clergy member to victimize an underage individual in their congregation.

Once the church staff learned of the accusations of an inappropriate relationship, King resigned from his pastoral duties. At one time, King had a prominent role in the church. As recently as March, the church’s website shows him actively preaching.

Zachary King was arraigned in a Fayette County courtroom on Tuesday afternoon. During the hearing, his bond was set at $250,000. A preliminary hearing is scheduled in his case for July 5.

While many seek spiritual guidance and support at church or other places of worship, the news of King’s alleged misconduct has raised more questions about oversight and the protection of vulnerable individuals within religious institutions.

Implications for the Lexington Community and Beyond

This case serves as another reminder of the importance of vigilance and accountability within all institutions, including places of worship. The allegations against King highlight the potential for abuse of power and the vulnerability of young victims.

Unfortunately, these cases are not rare. While many religious organizations, schools, and other institutions have safeguards in place to protect minors from sexual abuse, these incidents still occur.

All members of the community must be protected from these individuals. But unfortunately, protections at institutions can fail, leaving the most vulnerable at risk of the actions of these perpetrators. Those who are meant to protect these young individuals and guide them through the challenges of life are often the ones carrying out the abuse.

Clergy sexual abuse is a crime that can leave behind physical, emotional, and spiritual scars that can last a lifetime. When these acts occur, victims and their families have the right to hold the individuals and the institutions that protect them liable for these criminal acts.

Fighting for the Rights of Sexual Abuse Victims in West Virginia

We have litigated many cases of traumatic sexual and physical abuse committed against minors, including the record-breaking settlement with Miracle Meadows School.

At Hendrickson & Long, PLLC, we take a confidential and compassionate approach to every claim. Our team works tirelessly to support victims through every step of the legal process, providing the guidance and advocacy necessary to achieve justice and hold those responsible accountable for their actions.

If you or a loved one need legal assistance in cases involving clergy sexual abuse, our experienced team is here to provide representation during these challenging times. At Hendrickson & Long, PLLC, we are dedicated to ensuring that the most vulnerable members of the Western West Virginia community are protected from harm.