Ex-Boise pastor sentenced for sexual abuse of teen girl, could be out of prison in a year

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Posted at 3:21 PM, Oct 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-27 17:21:25-04

This article was originally published by Ruth Brown in the Idaho Statesman.

Fourth Judicial District Judge Deborah Bail sentenced a former Boise pastor on Monday to 15 years in prison for sexually abusing a 15-year-old girl.

Bret Welty, 49, pleaded guilty to sexual abuse of a child younger than age 16. His additional charge of lewd conduct with a child was dismissed, pursuant to the plea agreement.

Bail granted Welty a retained jurisdiction, which means that he will serve a yearlong rider treatment program in prison. If he is successful in the program, he could go back before a judge and ask to serve the rest of his sentence out of custody on probation.

Welty’s underlying sentence, which he could be forced to serve, is 15 years in prison, with three years fixed.

According to the prosecution, the victim was staying with Welty’s family for the weekend, as the “family believed that spending time at the pastor’s home would be helpful to her” because of anxiety she was having. While the girl was in the home, Welty sexually abused her.

Welty confessed to having “struggled with such behaviors before” but never with someone as young as the victim, according to court documents.

In prior hearings, defense attorneys said that Welty had worked at Calvary Chapel and the Common Ground Bikers Church. He was also previously listed as the pastor at Hard Rock Revival Church.