Former youth pastor charged with child pornography in Chattanooga

Former youth pastor charged with child pornography in Chattanooga

February 20th, 2014 by Todd South in Local - Breaking News

Joseph Todd Neill

Joseph Todd Neill

A former Shelbyville youth minister who police allege seduced one of his youth group members has been charged here in federal court with possessing child pornography.

The former North Fork Baptist Church youth minister Joseph Todd Neill, 37, was named in a federal criminal complaint filed February 18.

The 37-year-old man was first arrested and indicted in state court on charges of sexual exploitation of a minor and statutory rape by an authority figure. The victim was 17 years old at the time of the incident, according to police records.

On the more severe charge of exploitation Neill faces an 8- to 30-year sentence, if convicted in state court.

He is currently free on a $150,000 bond, having been released in September, according to the Bedford County Jail.

Police report that 90 images containing minors engaged in sexual activity were found on Neill's cell phone during the statutory rape investigation.

Neill has a hearing scheduled on the state charges Friday.

There has not been a hearing date yet set for the federal charge.