A Florida pastor who was accused of raping two teenage girls has died of an “apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound,” according to police.
According to the Roys Report, police found Pastor David Rowan dead in his car on the second floor of the Rutherford County Justice Center Parking Garage in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, last week.
Rowan, 66, was waiting in his car for a jury’s verdict in his trial for the alleged rape of the two sisters, then aged 14 and 15.
Rowan, who pastored Faith Baptist Church in Milton, Florida, was accused of raping the girls while he was in Murfreesboro speaking at a local church in 2014.
“While he was here in Murfreesboro, he ran across these two young ladies and asked to take them out for a hamburger and a milkshake,” Detective Tommy Roberts said in 2018. “He ended up taking them to a local hotel here in the city of Murfreesboro where evidence showed that he molested the teenage girls.”
In 2018, Rowan was charged with rape, unlawful sexual contact, and sexual battery by an authority figure. His trial started on November 29.
Both the defense and prosecution had rested their cases, and the jury had not yet reached a verdict when he died.
According to the website of Faith Baptist Church in Milton, FL, Rowan had been actively serving as pastor of the church throughout the investigation and trial. In a YouTube video on the church’s channel, he was seen preaching as late as Sunday, November 28.
In a Thanksgiving service sermon on November 21, Rowan said, “The truth will stand, my dear friends, when the world is on fire. Thank God for the truth of the word of God.
“If anyone has ever experienced [depression], find things to be thankful for, and your depression and gloom will flee,” Rowan later said.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Alessandro Photo
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.