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Las Vegas pastor accused of sexually assaulting child ‘over several years’

Updated December 20, 2019 - 8:41 pm

A pastor of a local church has been arrested on suspicion of sexual abuse of a child that “took place over several years,” Las Vegas police announced Friday.

Bramwell Bernardo Retana, 44, faces seven counts of lewdness with a child under 14 as well as one count each of sexual assault of a child under 14, luring a child with a computer to engage in a sexual act, sexually motivated first-degree kidnapping and child abuse, jail and court records show.

The pastor, who appears to go by his middle name, was booked Friday into the Clark County Detention Center, after a juvenile came forward about the alleged sexual abuse, according to the Metropolitan Police Department.

Denied bail, Retana was being held at the jail awaiting his initial appearance Saturday morning in Las Vegas Justice Court.

He and his wife, Gabby, are pastors of Iglesia Cristiana Oasis De Paz, located at 2020 Michael Way near Lake Mead Boulevard, according to the church’s website.

The sign outside the church on Friday night stated that the building on Michael Way was “under renovations.” The sign said people could ”visit us” at 1401 N. Decatur Blvd.

A call to the pastor at a church located at 1401 N. Decatur Blvd. was not immediately returned Friday evening.

On Thursday afternoon, Retana posted in Spanish on Facebook that he was looking to rent a “templo,” Spanish for “temple” for 2oo people in the northwest valley.  

A call to a phone number for the Retanas, listed on the church’s website, went straight to voicemail on Friday.

Originally from Costa Rica, Retana was ordained in 2002 as a licensed minister in Phoenix, Arizona. The couple founded the church, which started in their living room, in March 2004, according to the website.

They have a son together.

Retana does not appear to have any criminal history in Clark County, according to court records. But Metro detectives believe that, because of his position at the church, there may be additional unidentified victims.

Anyone with information about Retana, or anyone who believes he or she may have been a victim of abuse, can contact Metro’s juvenile sexual assault division at 702-828-3421. Anonymous tips can be submitted to Crime Stoppers at 702-385-5555.

Contact Rio Lacanlale at rlacanlale@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0381. Follow @riolacanlale on Twitter. Review-Journal staff writer Katelyn Newberg contributed to this report.

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