Deputies: Hernando youth pastor arrested, reportedly gave girls alcohol, touched one inappropriately

Posted at 5:34 PM, Oct 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-09 17:34:36-04

A Hernando County youth pastor is in trouble for giving alcohol to minors.
The church’s website says that Jared Thomas, has been the youth pastor here at the First Baptist Church in Ridge Manor since 2012. Though police reports say back on September 5th, he wasn’t acting very pastor-like.  
The police report shows that after a high school volleyball match on September 5th, Thomas took his daughters to hang out with friends.
The report says Thomas stayed at the home and gave the girls alcohol and became very drunk himself. It goes on to say that he touched a girl inappropriately and was making obscene comments to that girl, then began chasing her. It also says he broke a window in the home after the girl locked him out. 
“She was scared.” said Jason Sager.  Sager says the girl was a player on the youth basketball team that Thomas coaches. Sager and his wife mentor the girl and says she texted him that night. 
He said, "She was frightened, as she should be. There was an adult giving chase to her in a vehicle." 
Deputies arrested Thomas Sunday night.
Sager has now stepped in to coach  the youth basketball team. "I’m a Christian myself and I do believe that judgment is up to God, but I do believe that Mr. Thomas needs to do a little soul searching."
We reached out to the church and to Jared Thomas trying to get a statement about these charges but did not get a response.