ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The victim in a sexual assault case was the first to take the stand Tuesday in the trial of Jeffrey Forrest, a former youth worker at an Abilene church.
Forrest is charged with two counts of sexual assault of a child while working at Pioneer Drive Baptist Church in the 1990s.
The victim came forward as an adult, and Tuesday he described an alleged six years of abuse at the hands of Forrest.
The victim says the abuses started when he was a student at Bonham Elementary.
He says his teacher would walk him and his fellow classmates across the crosswalk to Pioneer Drive Baptist Church, the daycare at which Forrest worked.
The victim says Forrest began touching him under his clothes and in the years to come, the situation progressed.
The victim says he was abused by Forrest at several places in the Key City, including Hendrick Medical Center and Hardin-Simmons University.
Forrest eventually moved into the apartment behind the victim’s parents’ house, while he was babysitting and going on vacations with the family.
The victim described the abuse up until it ended, which he says was in middle school.
During cross examination, the victim seemed angry and frustrated, telling jurors he wanted the whole thing swept under the rug until he couldn’t keep the lie anymore.
The defense claimed the victim left important information out of the original police report filed against Forrest.
The prosecution also called several other witnesses to the stand, including a childhood friend, who testified witnessing the abuse, and a former daycare worker.
The victim’s father also took the stand, describing the moment he addressed the claims with Forrest. He says he invited Forrest over to his house and asked him point blank if he was guilty.
After the conversation, where Steele says Forrest confessed, he let Forrest leave his house.
During the entire day, the prosecution projected a photo of the victim on screens in the courtroom for jurors to see.
The photo was taken when the victim was in elementary school, the age the abuse started.