Victory Christian

Tulsa's Victory Church is drawing scrutiny for hosting a large, indoor concert with little mask-wearing this week, as COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations soar and the CDC and White House advise Oklahomans against gathering with those outside their immediate households.

"My reaction to seeing that stuff online is the same as I see it any time that I see folks that aren't taking this seriously," said Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum, asked about the incident at a Thursday press conference.

Chris Polansky / KWGS News

Kojo Asamoa-Caesar says he's no stranger to ugly remarks based on the color of his skin. The former teacher and school principal says over the course of his campaign challenging incumbent Republican Rep. Kevin Hern in Oklahoma's First Congressional District, he's heard more than his share of racist comments.

"It's unfortunate. It truly is unfortunate that I have become numb through this process of running for office," Asamoa-Caesar, who is Black, said.

Still, one recent comment left him surprised, less because of its contents and more because of who it came from.

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The pastor of Tulsa's Victory Church is apologizing for a racist remark, directed at a local political candidate, made by an employee who he has since fired.

Tulsa County Jail Booking photo

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — Arraignment re-scheduled for a former employee of a Tulsa mega-church on sex crime charges. The new date is January 22nd.

Former Victory Christian Center janitor Israel Castillo is charged with making lewd or indecent proposal to a child.

He has pleaded not guilty.

The 23-year-old Castillo allegedly sent explicit Facebook messages to a 14-year-old girl he had known for at least two years.

Tulsa County Booking photo

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — An ex-employee of a Tulsa megachurch accused of raping a 13-year-old girl and other sex crimes will be arraigned in district court next week.

Twenty-year-old Chris Denman, who worked at Victory Christian Center, faces charges of raping the 13-year-old on the ministry's campus in August.

He's also charged with molesting a 15-year-old girl and making a lewd proposal to a 12-year-old girl.

A judge on Monday reset Denman's hearing date until Oct.29

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — Two youth ministers at a Tulsa megachurch say misdemeanor charges of failing to report child abuse against them should be dismissed because no one in the case has been charged with child abuse.

Former Victory Christian Church employee Chris Denman is charged with first-degree rape and other sex crimes. Police say the 20-year-old Denman a raped 13-year-old girl in a stairwell on the church campus. Another ex-employee faces separate charges.

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — More than a week after a Tulsa church promised to ask Oklahoma's Department of Human Services to review how it handles child abuse allegations, DHS says it has yet to hear from the ministry.

Victory Christian Center made the pledge last week, after five workers were charged for not quickly reporting the alleged rape of a 13-year-old girl on the church's campus.

Victory Christian Center

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — The pastor of a Tulsa megachurch where five employees reportedly waited two weeks to report the alleged rape of a 13-year-old girl is encouraging congregants to speak up about sexual abuse.

Victory Christian Center pastor Sharon Daugherty brought up the topic during weekend services.

Police say Daugherty knew about the abuse allegations, but trusted ministry employees to follow in-house policies on reporting such incidents. She has not been charged.