Rev. Terry Hornbuckle, 44, founder of Agape Christian Fellowship in southeast Arlington, is accused of drugging and raping several women. Hornbuckle, who is married with three children, is being held in the Tarrant County Jail without bond because he repeatedly violated the conditions of his bail, including failing at least two drug tests.
Sean Colston and Betty Arvin, senior prosecutors in the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office, are trying Hornbuckle on three charges of sexual assault involving three women – two of whom were former members of Hornbuckle’s church. Hornbuckle faces anywhere from probation to 20 years in prison on each charge if convicted.
THE DEFENSE ATTORNEYS
Veteran defense attorneys Mike Heiskell and Leon Haley are arguing that Hornbuckle is guilty only of being an unfaithful husband, father and servant of God. They say Hornbuckle had consensual sex with the woman who are accusing him of rape.
Krystal Joy Buchanan, 23, a former member of Hornbuckle’s church, testified that Hornbuckle took her to a dingy Euless apartment on July 31, 2004, where he gave her some punch that made her pass out. When she awoke, she said she was naked and Hornbuckle was climbing off of her.
Jane Doe (a pseudonym), a former member of Hornbuckle’s church, has not testified yet, but prosecutors said she will testify that Hornbuckle used his position as her pastor to take advantage of her and have sex with her on numerous occasions.
Kate Jones (a pseudonym) has not taken the stand yet but prosecutors said she will testify that she met Hornbuckle at a fitness club, where he told her his name was “Terry Lee” and that he was a counselor for the Dallas Cowboys. Prosecutors said the woman invited him back to her apartment, where they smoked dope. At some point, Hornbuckle insisted that she drink some water, which was spiked with something and made her pass out. When she awoke, prosecutors said, she was naked in the bed with Hornbuckle.
State district Judge Scott Wisch has implemented strict rules for spectators and the media. There is no entry in or out of the courtroom except during breaks. Cameras and electronic devices are strictly prohibited except after the lunch break lunch when the media is allowed to come in for a few minutes to get courtroom file footage. Cell phones, if they ring in the courtroom, will be confiscated. Supporters of both sides have been warned by the judge to behave or they will be banned or, possibly, jailed.
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