“A former youth pastor at the Central Presbyterian Church in Clayton has been charged with child molestation and statutory sodomy.
Andrew Dickson, a youth pastor at the Central Presbyterian Church in Clayton, faces charges of child molestation and statutory sodomy.
Andrew Dickson, 30, of the 800 block of McKnight Road in University City, was charged April 9 in St. Louis County Circuit Court with one count of child molestation and two counts of statutory sodomy.
Charging documents say that the crimes occurred between March 1 and April 1, and Dickson admitted to fondling and engaging in oral sex with a minor.
University City police investigated the case and said the alleged crimes took place at Dickson’s home.
The church is at 7700 Davis Drive in Clayton. Dickson’s defense lawyer Mark Hammer could not be reached for comment.
In a statement, the church’s executive administrator, Tim Page, said that “when Central Presbyterian Church learned of this deeply disturbing situation, we immediately reported it to the appropriate authorities and proceeded to terminate this individual from his position. We are fully cooperating with authorities investigating this matter. We are focused on caring for the victim and supporting our church community as we grieve and heal together. We are praying for all parties involved.”
The church’s website listed Dickson as a preacher who gave several sermons in the past couple of years. Dickson also wrote at least two blog posts to the church’s website about recommitting himself to youth ministry and about God’s role in preserving social connections among teens. Links to those sermons and blog posts appear to have been removed from the church’s website but were accessible through searches of cached sites.
Bail for Dickson was originally set for $150,000, cash only. On Friday, Associate Circuit Judge John Newsham lowered Dickson’s bail to $75,000 and allowed him to post 10 percent to be released. Conditions of Dickson’s bail include allowing Dickson to live at a home in Washington state and barring him from contacting the alleged victim or that person’s relatives .”