A former church layperson arrested Monday on charges of gross sexual imposition and kidnapping for allegedly having sexual contact with a 12-year-old girl had his bond set Tuesday in Seneca County Common Pleas Court.
Emanuel Lewis, 61, who had been indicted by a Seneca County grand jury on one count each of gross sexual imposition, a third-degree felony, and kidnapping, a first-degree felony, had his bond set at $500,000 by Seneca County Common Pleas Court Judge Steve Shuff.
Lewis, who served as a layperson at Bloomville United Methodist Church, is accused of having sexual contact with the girl, a member of the church, and restraining her liberty March 28. Lewis' indictment also specifies he committed the kidnapping with a sexual motivation.
PHOTO BY ERIKA PLATT-HANDRU
Emanuel Lewis, who is accused of having sexual contact with a 12-year-old girl in March, appears in Seneca County Common Pleas Court Judge Steve Shuff’s courtroom Tuesday afternoon.
The allegation had been reported to the Seneca County Sheriff's Office in July by the Rev. Scott Blevins, the head pastor at Bloomville United Methodist Church and New Washington United Methodist Church. Blevins said the alleged incident didn't occur on church grounds, and following the allegation, Lewis was not allowed back on church property.
Seneca County Assistant Prosecutor Brian Boos said Tuesday that Lewis has a conviction from the early 1990s similar to his recent charges. Boos said Lewis, who served in the military, was court-marshalled and served six-and-a-half years in federal prison on the convictions. He said the prosecutor's office is trying to determine the exact convictions and when they occurred.
According to his indictment, if convicted, Lewis faces up to 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $30,000. Lewis, who is to be referred to an attorney, is scheduled to appear Sept. 11 for an arraignment.