Judge sets bond for Seaford Baptist youth pastor

Kimberly Lenz

Williamsburg Yorktown Daily


August 14, 2009

Jack Duffer

A York County judge set bond this morning at $20,000 for a York County youth minister who’s being held on charges of taking indecent liberties with a child and contributing to the delinquency of a child.

Reverend Jack Duffer, a popular associate pastor at Seaford Baptist Church whose duties include running youth programming, appeared before Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Judge Richard AtLee, Jr. via telemonitor. The 40-year-old Duffer, whose given name is Jeremy Ryan Duffer, is accused of engaging in a consensual sexual encounter with a known female juvenile on one occasion between July 24 and Aug. 8. The encounter, police said, occurred at a residence in York County.

Duffer, who told the court he'd been suspended from his job with pay "until they have more information to determine what's going to happen," requested a court-appointed attorney. AtLee obliged, appointing Newport News criminal defense attorney Jeffrey C. Rountree.

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Barbara Cooke said the nature of the charges would generally trigger no bond, but acknowledged Duffer's lack of a criminal history and ties to the community lessened any flight risk.

Duffer told Cooke he'd lived in Seaford for two and a half years with his wife and four minor children. They'd previously lived in Hawaii for five years, Duffer said. If released, he would return to his home, Duffer said. Asked if he could find another place to live where minor children would not be present, Duffer said there were many church members whom he believed could help.

Cooke asked the court to withhold bond because of a lack of definitive plan for pretrial housing, to order pretrial supervision and to prohibit Duffer from having any unsupervised contact with any minor children.

AtLee noted that while the charges were serious, Duffer's clean record indicated a bond should be set. He ordered pretrial supervision, and instructed the associate pastor to have no unsupervised contact with minor children and while pending trial not to maintain a residence with any minor children present.

As of Friday evening, Duffer had not yet posted bond.

A preliminary hearing is set for Nov. 19 at 10 a.m.


SNAP Note: Seaford Baptist Church in Virginia is shown as an SBC-affiliated church.

See also:

York Co. youth pastor faces sex crimes charges, WVEC News 13, 8/13/09

Jailed former pastor cited 'passion' for working with you, ABP, 8/18/09