CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- A Virginia judge agreed on Friday to set bond for a church deacon charged with raping a preteen girl.
The Daily Progress reports that 34-year-old Richard Murray Coe is charged in Charlottesville Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court with four counts of rape, two counts of aggravated sexual battery and one count of strangulation.
Judge Humes Franklin agreed to free Coe on $50,000 bond.
A prosecutor had urged the judge to keep Coe jailed.
“Put most pointedly: Coe may be an Eagle Scout, a successful businessman and community figure but he was all of those things when he put his hands around my daughter’s throat and pushed himself inside her,” the alleged victim's father testified.
Coe serves as a deacon at Trinity Presbyterian Church.
Church officials have said the charges against Coe are not related to his church position, the church or a church function.
He is slated to appear in court for a preliminary hearing on June 4.