Edwin Bonet-Ruiz (Source: Hardin County Detention Center)
Abundant Life Church in Radcliff
Central Hardin High School
RADCLIFF, KY (WAVE) – A Hardin County church is in shock after one of its ministers stands accused of hugging and kissing a teenage student at the school where he taught.
For nearly a decade the Central Hardin teacher was also a special deputy volunteer with the Hardin County Sheriff's Office helping as an interpreter and with traffic during special events. Now all of Edwin Bonet-Ruiz's titles have been revoked and a community is left stunned.
"When you think of Edwin, you don't think of someone doing something like this," said Terry Linscott, associate minister at Abundant Life Church in Radcliff.
For 18 years Bonet-Ruiz was in a leadership role at the Abundant Life Church. The high school teacher ministered in Spanish as part of the church's Hispanic outreach program.
"Teach and preach on Sunday afternoons or Wednesday nights or to help facilitate different classes in Spanish that was his role," said Linscott.
Even though he wasn't a paid employee church board members made the decision Tuesday to revoke Bonet-Ruiz's credentials after he was arrested on Monday. The arrest came after a 14-year-old student told a school resource at Central Hardin High School that Bonet-Ruiz hugged and kissed her during school hours on December 5. Bonet-Ruiz is also accused of having inappropriate contact with her through Facebook. Police say he has admitted to it all.
"It's not the character of Christ that we preach and it's not the character of a leader that we would have in our pulpit," said Linscott.
Linscott said he's known Bonet-Ruiz and his wife of 33 years and their children for nearly two decades.
"Some of the most upstanding people that you can imagine," said Linscott. "That's why it's really difficult for us to hear the news that we've heard."
On Wednesday night, the church held a members only meeting to talk about this situation, one that has hit a lot of people hard.
"Battling every emotion you can imagine from anger, hurt, disappointment, not understanding, not knowing, just really shocked about this situation," said Linscott.
The church also adds they are praying for the victim and her family during this time.
The Hardin County Sheriff's Office says Bonet-Ruiz will no longer be a volunteer.
Tuesday, April 20 2010 11:21 PM EDT2010-04-21 03:21:00 GMT
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