March 18, 2005

Bishop denies assaulting women

Fort Worth Star-Telegram


ARLINGTON - Bishop Terry L. Hornbuckle denied criminal and civil allegations that he sexually assaulted three female parishioners, during a press conference in a ballroom at the Arlington Wyndham hotel Friday morning.

Hornbuckle, 43, of Grapevine, was indicted last week on four charges of sexual assault. Former members of Agape Christian Fellowship allege that he assaulted them in a vehicle or an apartment. In two of the cases, he is accused of using date-rape drugs to overcome his victims. The women have also filed personal injury lawsuits against Hornbuckle.

Authorities also have charged him with possession of a controlled substance after saying they found methamphetamines in his vehicle during his arrest.

Hornbuckle has been place on an indefinite leave of absence by the church's board.

"I am unequivocally and emphatically innocent of these charges," Hornbuckle said.

Hornbuckle said anyone who knows the kind of Christian he is knows he is innocent. He said he was confident he would be cleared in court.

His wife, Renee Hornbuckle, said she believes her husband is innocent and that the accusations are tearing away at her family's spiritual and personal lives.

Posted by kshaw at March 18, 2005 06:28 PM