Crime - Sacto 911

Church choir director arrested in sexual abuse of Sacramento teen

Kareem Abdul Mitchell
Kareem Abdul Mitchell Sacramento Police Department

Sacramento police arrested a 42-year-old man accused of sexually assaulting a teenager he met while working as a choir director at New Testament Baptist Church in North Highlands.

In September, police received a report alleging a sexual relationship between a teenage boy and Kareem Abdul Mitchell that spanned from 2005 to 2008. The alleged victim is now an adult. He told police that he met Mitchell when Mitchell was working at the church on 34th Street off Watt Avenue.

Similar accusations were leveled against Mitchell twice before, while he was working as the choir director, but no charges were ever filed, police said.

On Tuesday, police obtained a warrant for Mitchell’s arrest.

He was taken into custody at police headquarters, where he was being interviewed by detectives.

Mitchell was booked at the Sacramento County jail on suspicion of multiple sexual assault charges, including sodomy, oral copulation and other sex acts. He remained there Wednesday in lieu of a $500,000 bond.

According to state law, a person can be prosecuted for sexually abusing a minor up to eight years beyond the victim’s 18th birthday or three years after the victim realizes that physical or psychological injury has resulted from childhood sexual abuse, regardless of the victim’s age.

The Sacramento Police Department said anyone who believes they, too, may have been victimized should contact police. Anyone with information pertaining to these incidents was also encouraged to contact police at (916) 264-5471 or by sending a text to 274637 with the word SACTIP followed by the information. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

Call The Bee’s Marissa Lang at (916) 321-1038. Follow her on Twitter at @Marissa_Jae.

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