News From Terre Haute, Indiana

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March 5, 2014

Lay pastor files guilty plea in child sex case

TERRE HAUTE — A Terre Haute man has pleaded guilty to seven felonies in connection with a child molestation that allegedly involved the man’s wife as well.

Matthew Mahoney, 37, will be sentenced April 2 in Vigo Superior Court 3. He has pleaded guilty to four counts of sexual misconduct with a minor, vicarious sexual gratification, child solicitation and dissemination of matter harmful to a minor.

Judge David Bolk ordered a pre-sentence report to be compiled, and canceled next week’s trial of the case.

In February, Bolk denied a request to have Mahoney evaluated for placement in the county’s work release or in-home detention programs.

Mahoney and his wife Jennifer, 35, were arrested in April 2013 after an investigation by the Vigo County Sheriff’s Department into allegations by a 15-year-old child who stated that she had been in a sexual relationship with Matthew Mahoney for about a year.

Police noted that Matthew and Jennifer Mahoney were lay pastors at a Terre Haute church, but none of the alleged sexual activity is believed to have occurred at the church.

Jennifer Mahoney also faces charges of sexual misconduct with a minor, child solicitation, vicarious sexual gratification and dissemination of matter harmful to minors. Her trial is set to commence March 18.

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