Currently The Leader's managing editor, Echo Day is an 11-year veteran of the paper.

Munford pastor accused of molestation

A Munford pastor has been accused of sexually assaulting minors. 

According to an affidavit obtained by the Tipton County Sheriff’s Office, a minor has accused 39-year-old Ronnie Gorton, who pastors The Awakening Church in Munford, of sexual assault, molestation and rape.

The incidents have been ongoing, but the most recent occurred on Jan. 31. 

Tipton County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Billy Daugherty said the case is a multijurisdictional investigation. 

“There’s an allegation in the county and an allegation in Atoka,” he said. “But there’s nothing to indicate anything took place at the church.” 

Daugherty said allegations of sexual conduct are always alarming, but “extra alarming” when they involve someone in a position of authority.

Gorton has not been arrested and the investigation is still ongoing. 

“Interviews are being conducted, evidence is being gathered,” Daugherty said. “Currently these are just allegations, no warrants have been filed.” 

Gorton’s friend reported the pastor was armed with a handgun and wanted to commit suicide on Jan. 31. He met with Atoka detectives and was taken into custody for a 603 hold, which is done when someone threatens suicide.

The church’s website and social media accounts have been disabled. 

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