Suffer the children: Popular Alabama televangelist Acton Bowen pleads guilty to 28 charges of raping and sexually assaulting multiple children between the ages of 12 and 16.
Before his arrest in 2018, Bowen was the host of xlroads TV, a global broadcast reaching millions every week.
An Alabama evangelist pleaded guilty this morning in an Etowah County courtroom to 28 counts of sexual abuse involving six victims.
Paul Acton Bowen, charged in both Jefferson County and Etowah counties, was facing criminal charges, including enticing a child for sexual act, sodomy, traveling to meet a child for sexual act and sexual abuse involving six different victims between the ages of 13 and 16.
The Gadsden Times reports:
Acton Bowen on Monday pleaded guilty to 28 charges related to sexual abuse of six boys between the ages of 12 and 16 — most contacted through his ministry to young people.
BREAKING: Former youth evangelist Acton Bowen just pleaded guilty to all child sex abuse charges in Etowah County. Will be sentenced at a later date. He also faces charges in Jefferson County and Bay County, Florida. pic.twitter.com/jpk4EGyzJ3
— Sarah Killian (@SarahWVTM13) December 2, 2019
Bowen pleaded guilty to 10 different counts involving three victims who were between the ages of 12 and 16 at the time. At least two of the victims said Bowen offered them hundreds of dollars to perform sexual acts.
Two of the counts bring a maximum sentence of 99 years in prison. Judge Debra Jones will have a sentencing hearing in the next 30 days.
Before being arrested for raping and sexually assaulting children, Bowen, founder of Acton Bowen Outreach Ministries, was a wildly popular youth evangelist and the host of xlroads TV, “a worldwide broadcast viewed weekly by millions of teens and adults in every city in America and over 170 countries around the world.”
ABC News notes:
The news of Bowen’s arrest in 2018 shocked many in east Alabama’s Christian community where he was considered a hometown hero. Bowen had served as chaplain for the 2012 Olympics, made appearances on Fox News, and promoted himself as a spiritual adviser to Hollywood Stars including Justin Beiber.
According to reports, Bowen offered his underage victims hundreds of dollars to perform sexual acts, victims he met through his youth ministry.
Sentencing is expected sometime next month, with Bowen facing a possible life sentence.
Bottom line: Popular Alabama televangelist Acton Bowen pleads guilty to 28 charges of raping and sexually assaulting multiple children.
“If kids got raped by clowns as often as kids get raped by preachers it would be against the law to take your kid to the circus.”