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A youth pastor and a softball coach were arrested in Florida for unconnected sex crimes involving minors, according to officials.
David Robinson, 34, and Matthew Galhouse, 40, were charged in Hillsborough County. Robinson was charged with nine counts of transmitting harmful material to a minor while Galhouse faces 12 counts of sexual battery.
“Two youth leaders in our community took advantage of a parent’s trust to prey on our children,” Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister said at a news conference, according to Fox 13.
Detectives discovered during an investigation that Robinson, a youth pastor at Shiloh Baptist Church in Plant City, texted two minors sexual content considered harmful between January and June. Robinson also volunteered at various Christian schools in east Hillsborough County.
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David Robinson, 34, and Matthew Galhouse, 40, were charged in Hillsborough County. (Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office)
Chronister said Robinson sent the victims Bible verses before escalating to an inappropriate conversation.
“But after the Bible verses was where it would get inappropriate,” Chronister said. “He would ask questions, ‘Are you sexually active? Have you ever been pregnant? Have you ever been penetrated?'”
According to the sheriff’s office, Robinson was arrested in Polk County and is being held at the Polk County Detention Center.
Galhouse was arrested and charged last month by the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office for sex crimes on an underage victim. Pasco detectives said they suspected he had also committed similar crimes at his home in Hillsborough County and notified HCSO, which said they conducted an investigation and confirmed the allegations. Galhouse now faces additional charges for his crimes in Hillsborough County.
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A youth pastor and a softball coach were arrested in Florida for unconnected sex crimes involving minors. (Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office)
Chronister said Galhouse would invite the victim to his home in Hillsborough County over the last three months.
“Not only did he bring her back to the house to have sex with her at his house here in Hillsborough County, he also then said, ‘I feel comfortable, I’ll hire you to be the babysitter for my child.’ So when she would babysit, he took that as an open invitation to have sex with her,” Chronister said. “So whenever she would babysit for his child, there was sexual intercourse that happened.”
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Galhouse was a softball coach when the abuse happened, according to the sheriff’s office.
“As parents, we almost don’t want to send our children to school,” Chronister said. “Nonetheless, the church, nonetheless, the extracurricular activities, we have to let children be children. And I think that’s what makes these two cases so disgusting is the fact that we as parents have placed you in positions of trust.”