The trial of former Abilene youth minister Jeffrey Forrest began on Monday
The trial of Jeffrey Forrest, a former Abilene youth minister and educator accused of child sexual assault, began with jury selection on Monday.
The details of the composition of the jury were not finalized before the Reporter-News deadline.
Defense and prosecution lawyers said they expect the case to last less than two weeks, including a potential sentencing phase.
Forrest, 48, was previously scheduled to stand trial in 2016, but did not appear for the proceedings. His departure from the country earned him a place on the list of the 15 most wanted fugitives by the US Marshals.
He was facing two counts of aggravated sexual assault on a child at the time, according to records.
“In Pursuit with John Walsh”, on Investigation Discovery, featured Forrest before his catch in Mexico in May.
He remains in custody in the Taylor County Jail, according to jail records.
Forrest is accused of sexually assaulting four victims, apparently aged 8 to 15, while working as a youth minister in several churches in the city.
These allegations were made in 2015, according to Reporter-News archives.
Another victim, according to Reporter-News records, reported in 2011 that he was assaulted between 1993 and 1999 while Forrest was working at the daycare at Pioneer Drive Baptist Church.
Forrest is accused of jumping on bail in addition to previous sexual assault charges.
Timothy Chipp covers education and is a general assignment reporter for Abilene Reporter-News. If you value local news, you can support local journalists with a digital subscription to ReporterNews.com.