Former Saskatoon youth pastor arrested in Ontario
Kris Allan Gowdy was arrested by the Durham Regional Police for luring a child via computer and attempted aggravated sexual assault. It is believed that he worked at a Saskatoon church.
A former Saskatoon youth pastor, who tested positive for HIV, has been arrested in Ontario for allegedly trying to lure a 15 year old boy over the internet for sex.
Investigators are concerned there may be more victims nationwide including here in Saskatoon. Kris Gowdy, 42, worked until July of this year as a youth pastor at the Lakeview Church in Saskatoon.
The Lakeview Church congregation is in shock and disbelief after the allegations were revealed to the congregation.
"As you can imagine we are deeply saddened and there are a lot of heavy hearts in our midst," said Jay Stark, board chair at the Lakeview Church.
Gowdy was arrested Thursday east of Toronto. Police allege he befriended a 15 year old boy online then set up a location where they were to meet for sex. Police say the "boy" was actually an undercover officer and Gowdy was taken into custody at the location. Gowdy iis now a working as a youth pastor in Southern Ontario. Police say that during the last decade he has held that position in a number of churches across Canada and the U.S., including Lakeview Church in Saskatoon.
Jay Stark confirms to CTV that "Gowdy was a youth pastor here at Lakeview from June 2011 to July 2012. Church officials say there were no complaints about him from the congregation."
Police say in 2009 Gowdy admitted to having been diagnosed with HIV. They allege he used the profile name "college toy 20-33" on a number of social media sites. Among the interests he listed on one blog are teens. Lakeview Church officials wouldn't say much about his character, but added "we are fully cooperating with the police and don't feel it appropriate to comment on our impression of him when he was here."
The church has brought in counsellors to provide support for youth and families in the congregation.
"At the moment the primary concern of our church is our people, especially the youth in our care. We are focusing all of our time and attention on looking after our families," said Stark.
Investigators are concerned there may be other victims. Saskatoon police are asking anyone with information to come forward.