Investigators are trying to determine how many people were allegedly victimized by a Venice youth pastor recently arrested on suspicion of molestation, Los Angeles police said Thursday.
Demetrius Darnell Allen, 28, is accused of abusing a then-14-year-old member of his Venice church, according to the District Attorney's Office. Allen was the pastor in charge of youth ministries at First Baptist Church of Venice, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
"Investigators believe there may be additional victims, and are hoping anyone with information about this case or any unreported cases will come forward,'' according to LAPD.
Detective Michael Brox said Allen and the girl met at the church, but the alleged molestation occurred at his residence in Granada Hills.
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"If you look at cases like this, time and time again, there is a trust level," Brox said at a news conference at the LAPD's Devonshire Station. "A person in a position of a counselor, teachers, clergy -- especially when you're involved in youth -- the youth have a tendency to look up to adults ... especially someone in a position like him, as a youth pastor, a youth leader, and ... he took advantage of that."
Allen is charged with 10 counts of lewd act on a child and single felony counts of possession of child pornography and contacting a minor for a sexual offense. He is being held on $1 million bail.
Anyone with information about the case can contact detectives at 818-832-0980.