A pastor has been charged with the alleged sexual assault of an underage girl, San Bernardino police said.
Colton resident Harold Dien, 57, a pastor at a Seventh Day Adventist church, was charged Thursday with misdemeanor counts of sexual assault on a minor. Police say the assault occurred in Loma Linda, but not on church grounds.
The pastor also has a connection to Seventh Day Adventist churches in Upland and Orange County, said San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Cindy Bachman.
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The investigation into Dien began Feb. 5, when an SBCSD officer responded to a Child Protective Services referral regarding possible child abuse, said Sheriff-Coroner John McMahon. Dien was identified as the suspect after police conducted several interviews, including with the victim.
A Feb. 6 interview with Dien led investigators to forward the case to the San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office, McMahon said. On March 15, the District attorney filed criminal charges against the pastor.
Police believe there may be additional victims. Anyone with information is asked to call 909-387-3545. People can also submit anonymous tips by calling 1-800-78-CRIME (27463).