The Cloverdale pastor who was charged with multiple counts of sexual assault, and one count of sexual touching of a minor under the age of 16, worked as a youth pastor through the Cloverdale Christian Fellowship Church.
Samuel Emerson, 34, has been charged with 13 counts of sexual assault, 11 counts of being in a position of authority and touching a person for a sexual purpose, and one count of sexual touching of a person under the age of 16.
Samuel’s wife, Madelaine Emerson, 37, has been charged with one count of sexual assault, one count of being in a position of authority and touching a person for a sexual purpose, and one count of threats to cause death or bodily harm.
The alleged assaults occurred between 2015 and 2017.
In a media release issued Tuesday afternoon, Surrey RCMP revealed that they received several allegations of sexual assault on May 17, 2017.
On May 18, the Emersons were arrested. Neither were known to police beforehand, and were later released under “strict conditions.”
Surrey RCMP said that at the time of the arrest in May, “there was not investigational or public safety need to report out on this matter,” which is why the information is being released four months later in October.
The strict conditions imposed onto the Emersons “were sufficient to alleviate any safety concerns,” said RCMP.
Samuel and Madelaine are not in police custody at this time, but continue to be under the imposed conditions. The couple has five children of their own.
The Cloverdale Christian Fellowship Church, now known as the Cloverdale Church, is located in Surrey at 17802 66 Avenue.
No mention of Samuel or Madelaine is on the church’s website, but according to his social media accounts, Samuel Emerson was a pastor at Cloverdale Church, and worked with Youth Church Cloverdale.
On May 18, 2017, the day Samuel and Madelaine were arrested, Randy Emerson, Samuel’s father and current pastor of Cloverdale Church, took to Facebook to write, “If you know us and our church please pray. We are under attack like never before and we need the accuser of the saints to be silenced and Truth prevail.”
Two days later, he wrote, “Thank you to everyone who is praying for us and expressing love at this time. You are making a difference. This is a time when we must not believe with our eyes and ears but with our spirits. Let God be true and every man a liar. Can’t be specific at this time but your prayers are making a difference.”
Samuel Emerson’s work as a pastor also took him to other churches in Surrey, including Life Church in White Rock. In a Facebook post in September 2016, Life Church wrote, “This Sunday we welcomed young Pastor Sam Emerson from our sister church in Cloverdale, B.C.”
“Sam grew upon our church, and had some very important insights to share,” the post reads.
Surrey RCMP have said the investigation into Samuel and Madelaine Emerson is still ongoing, and that they believe there may have been other victims.
They are asking that any potential victims come forward to speak with police.
“Calling the police to report a sexual assault is a very difficult thing to do, especially when the suspect is someone you knew and trusted, and can leave lifelong emotional scars,” said RCMP Corporal Scotty Schumann.
“Our highly skilled investigators take sexual assaults very seriously, and, supported by our Surrey RCMP Victim Services workers, are here to listen and provide emotional support,” he said.
Surrey RCMP as that anyone with more information call 604-599-0502, or, if they wish to remain anonymous, to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.