Church responds to sex assault charges

Todd Hildebrand was a volunteer at a Washington church when he was charged with offences in Abbotsford.

Todd Ronald Hildebrand

A U.S. man charged with child sex offences in Abbotsford volunteered with a Washington State church, but an official there said the man was not part of any children’s ministries.

Abbotsford Police announced the charges against Todd Ronald Hildebrand, 40, on Oct. 11 involving offences that allegedly occurred 10 years ago involving a 13-year-old youth.

The Abbotsford News has learned that Hildebrand was connected with the Abundant Life Church in Bellingham, Wash. Pastor Jonathan Hanson said Hildebrand began attending the church seven years ago and has been actively involved working in the coffee shop and with the music band.

“Todd has never been part of any of the children’s ministries or youth ministries, nor has Todd ever been along with any youth or children in our church,” Hanson said in a written statement to The News.

He said the church is helping Hildebrand’s family “walk through all of the challenges that they are facing with these charges.”

“We have never observed or known Todd’s character to be anything but honourable, trustworthy, faithful, and he is well respected by our church members,” Hanson added.

Hildebrand was charged with two counts of sexual assault, two counts of sexual interference, and two counts of invitation to sexual touching.

He is a permanent resident of the United States, but is a Canadian citizen who often visited Abbotsford, police said, expressing concerns that there could be other victims and urged anyone with information to come forward.

Hildebrand was released from custody and must follow court-ordered conditions that include not attending any area where children are expected to be present such as parks, school grounds, recreation centres, swimming pools and playgrounds.

Just Posted

Serial killer Robert Pickton transferred to Quebec: victim’s family

Pickton was convicted in December 2007 of six counts of second degree murder

Illness and injury leaving many Abbotsford firefighters unable to work

More than 20 firefighters missed time due to long-term illness or injury last year

Mouat’s Benning signs with UFV wrestling

Benning one of 10 new recruits inked for the fall

Donation of more than $20,000 supports Shine On Legacy Fund

Fund created in memory of Abbotsford Police Const. John Davidson

BREAKING: Fire destroys Chilliwack restaurant

Popular Banners Restaurant goes up in flames Sunday morning.

VIDEO: Canadian toddler caught practising hockey skills in crib

Eli Graveline is getting praise from far and wide as the internet freaks out of cute throwback video

Serial speeder clocked going 138 km/hr in 90 zone

Driver had their vehicle impounded

Man shot dead in Surrey ID’d as hockey coach and father of two

Paul Bennett was ‘a champion for the sport,’ team manager says

Canadian Syrian children’s choir not to attend festival over fears about U.S. travel

Many kids are recent immigrants from countries covered by Trump travel ban

VIDEO: Plane crashes in Langley farm field (updated)

Plane lost power shortly after takeoff, RCMP told

B.C. teacher ends Jeopardy! winning streak, taking home US$69,000

Ali Hasan, from New Westminster, has been gaining fans as a “one-man invasion,” says Alex Trebek

1 man in critical condition after ‘serious’ stabbing in Downtown Eastside: police

Vancouver police say there was an altercation and stabbing appears targeted

Most Read