ALISO VIEJO (CBSLA.com) — A 30-year-old youth pastor suspected of engaging in inappropriate conduct with children at an Aliso Viejo church has been arrested, deputies said Thursday.
On Wednesday, Brandon McDade, of Mission Viejo, was taken into custody on suspicion of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a child and child annoyance, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
McDade is being held on $20,000 at the Orange County Jail. He is expected to appear in court on Friday.
The investigation began earlier this week when sheriff’s investigators were contacted after patrol deputies took report of allegations against McDade at Grace Hills Church, located in Aliso Viejo.
“During the course of the investigation, several other victims were contacted, each indicating they had engaged in inappropriate conduct with McDade over a two-year period while he was employed as the youth pastor at Grace Hills Church,” said Lt. Jeff Hallock. “There have been several alleged incidents of lewd and inappropriate conduct, several of which have occurred on the church property.”
A preliminary investigation revealed the teenage victims all attended the church and were part of the youth group when the acts allegedly occurred.
McDade has been employed by the church for about six years.
Authorities believe there are additional victims based on the allegations, his leadership role and access to children.
Anyone with information regarding additional victims has been urged to contact the Orange County Sheriff’s Department’s Special Victim’s Unit at (714) 647-7418 or (714) 647-7000.