Pastor Erick Vidal-Fuentes was found guilty of second-degree rape and fourth-degree sex offense for assaulting a member of his church in 2020. Credit: State's Attorney's Office

The pastor of a Takoma Park church has been found guilty of sexually assaulting a member of his congregation under the guise of providing a healing massage for her injured ankle.

Erick Odir Vidal-Fuentes, 39, of Hyattsville, is the pastor at the Iglesia Pentecostal El Fin Viene in the 7500 block of New Hampshire Ave. He was convicted Tuesday of second-degree rape and fourth-degree sex offense by Montgomery County Circuit Court Judge Karla Smith.

He has another case pending for assault of a different parishioner who came forward and testified during this trial, according to the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office. That trial will be held at the Circuit Court on July 24, Takoma Park Police said.

On Sept. 29, 2020, the victim, who attended the church, injured her ankle, and her mother told her that their church pastor could massage it with “special spiritual oils with healing powers,” court documents said.

When the woman entered the church with Vidal-Fuentes, she noticed that no one else was there, according to court documents.

Under the guise of an ankle massage on a blanket on the church floor, Vidal-Fuentes sexually assaulted the victim, prosecutors alleged. The victim repeatedly told him that she was “not comfortable” with his actions and physically tried to stop him, court documents said.


Vidal-Fuentes instructed the victim not to tell anyone about the massage, telling her that a therapist appointment is confidential, so his massage appointment with her was confidential, according to the court documents.

“The defendant allegedly uses his power of authority as pastor and head of the church to gain control, confidence and trust of this victim, then takes that trust, victimizing this victim for his own sexual gratification,” Det. 1st Class Charles Earle, who works for the City of Takoma Park and Montgomery County, said in charging documents.

The Takoma Park Police Department said it began investigating this incident, along with the other victim’s case, on June 21, 2021, and arrested Vidal-Fuentes around two months later


During interviews with detectives, he made “several incriminating statements,” police said.

In a press release, State’s Attorney John McCarthy said he wanted to “thank the victim for having the bravery to come forward and testify in the trial, helping to ensure Vidal-Fuentes is not able to do further harm in the community.”

Vidal-Fuentes’ sentencing hearing is set for Oct. 4, where he could face up to 20 years in prison, according to the State’s Attorney’s Office.


Vidal-Fuentes’ attorney was unable to be immediately reached for comment on Thursday afternoon.