Associate pastor of east Austin church charged with sexual assault of child

Ruben Garcia (Hays County Jail Photo)

BUDA, Texas (KXAN) — An associate pastor at Betania Baptist Church in east Austin wanted by authorities for the past two months has been arrested and charged with sexual assault of a child.

Fifty-nine-year-old Ruben Garcia, of Buda, was arrested by the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force at around 2 p.m. Monday on Torrington Street in Buda.

In April of this year, Nueces County issued a warrant for his arrest in connection with a 2015 sexual assault or a child investigation in Corpus Christi.

The task force also learned that Garcia had a warrant out for his arrest from Hays County. A grand jury indicted him on two counts of sexual assault of a child and one count of indecency with a child by sexual contact. The grand jury indictment is based on an investigation that began in early 2016.

Task force officers set up surveillance of Garcia’s church, Betania Baptist Church at 1117 Tillery St., where he served as an associate pastor and also lived on the property.

“We would urge anyone having reason to believe their child or children may have been encountered inappropriately to contact their local law enforcement agency,” the task force said in a statement.

Garcia is in Hays County custody where bond has been set at $300,000.

Betania Baptist Church on Tillery Street in east Austin (KXAN Photo/Andrew Choat)
Betania Baptist Church on Tillery Street in east Austin (KXAN Photo/Andrew Choat)

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