July 11, 2019

Stephen Morris

A pastor at a Johnston County church is accused of sex crimes against a 13-year-old girl, officials say.

The Rev. Stephen Arthur Morris, 61, is charged with five counts each of statutory rape/sex offense and indecent liberties with a child, according to the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office. He was arrested Friday.

He is accused of committing crimes against the teenager from 2013 to 2014, according to Capt. Jeff Caldwell, a Sheriff’s Office spokesman.

Morris led Oliver’s Grove Baptist Church in Four Oaks and is now “off the job,” reports ABC11, The News & Observer’s media partner.

The News & Observer reached out to Morris’ church on Tuesday morning, and calls went unanswered.

Morris’ bail was set at $2.5 million, Caldwell said. He is scheduled to appear in court July 25.