RPD Officer facing sex assault charges denied bond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Charles Church made his first appearance in front of a judge Thursday as he fought to be released on bond.

Church, 39, is a 12-year veteran of the Richmond Police Department. He was arrested earlier this week and charged with two counts of sodomy of a child less than 13 years old.

According to police, the incident happened Monday, was reported and investigated on Tuesday, and Church was arrested Wednesday morning. Prosecutors say the victim reported the incident to the first adult she felt comfortable with. Legal analyst Russ Stone says it’s important to have these types of crimes reported as soon as possible.

“Recovering blood, recovering DNA evidence, from the actual victim of the offense, that if you wait too long, if you wait several days, that evidence may not exist anymore,” Stone said.

In court Thursday, Church reminded the judge to presume his innocence and that he has lived in the Richmond area for years, so he was not a flight risk.

Prosecutors spoke about the victim’s fear of Church before a judge ultimately decided to deny him bond. Stone says in a case this serious, bond is rarely granted.

“Whether or not the individual might be a danger to himself or a danger to other people and when you’ve got a charge of this nature the defendant is going to have a very high burden in trying to convince a judge that he should be released,” said Stone.

Church remains in jail and is scheduled to be back in court on December 1st.

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