Jacksonville Youth Pastor Jeff Bedwell Arrested on Child Sex Abuse Charge

| Jul 15, 2021 | Catholic Church


A former Jacksonville youth pastor is in jail and facing multiple felony charges. In early July 2021, former Chets Creek Church youth pastor, Jeff Bedwell, was arrested and accused of sexual battery on a little girl. Bedwell, age 38, was booked into the Duval County jail, where he was held on a $500,000 bond.

According to an arrest report from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, Jeff Bedwell worked at the Chets Creek Church on Hodges Boulevard. He and the alleged victim became close when he began grooming her as a 12-year-old girl. He sexually abused her two years later when she was 14, and continued throughout her teenage years.  The abuse allegedly included incidents of intercourse, oral sex, sexual touching, lewd text messages, and the exchange of graphic photos.

Bedwell is facing one count of unlawful sexual activity, one count of lewd and lascivious molestation of a minor between the age of 12 and 16, one count of lewd and lascivious sexual battery on a minor between the age of 12 and 16, and one count of transmitting harmful material to a child, according to Duval County jail records.

“Jeff Bedwell’s employment with the church was terminated more than two years ago for issues unrelated to the current charges now made against him,” according to a church official.  “Right now, our primary focus is to pray for any person who has been harmed and support them in any way they need,” the church said in a statement.

Horowitz Law has filed numerous sexual misconduct claims on behalf of children who were sexually abused by clergy and youth leaders of all religious denominations.  If you or someone you know was sexually abused by a clergy member of any religious faith, please contact our law firm at 888-283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz at [email protected] for a free consultation.