Founder of area kids ministry camp arrested for indecency with a - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |


Founder of area kids ministry camp arrested for indecency with a child

BELL COUNTY - The Founder and Executive Director of Patriot Kids Ministries Camp has been arrested on an outstanding warrant for indecency with a child.

John Phillip Tidball, 63, was arrested on an outstanding Bexar County warrant for two counts of indecency with a child/sexual contact. Bexar County issued the arrest warrant in Oct. 2013. Tidball was arrested at 11:30 p.m. Monday night on camp property by Bell County Sheriff's Deputies. Tidball has 31 years of service in the Army as a Retired Lt. Colonel Chaplain.

According to the Bell County Sheriff's Office, there are no known victims in Bell County at this time. The alleged victim, who is now in her 20's, was 8-years-old at the time and she says the sexual assaults lasted until she was 14. Authorities say she did not attend Tidball's camp.

Tidball is being held at the Bell County Jail until he can be extradited to Bexar County. Bexar County has been notified of his arrest. He was arrested near the camp, where he lives as well.

The Bell County Sheriff's Department says the victim had been reporting the sexual abuse for many years, but no agency was able to file charges. When she found out he was running a kid's church camp, she filed the charges with Bexar County in Oct. 2013 and they put out the warrant for his arrest.

In Texas, there is no statute of limitation for sexual abuse of a child.

In their investigation, Bell County authorities will interview campers to see if any abuse happened while they were at the camp, but as of right now, the accuser is the only know victim.

Tidball retired in 2008 as Lt. Colonel Chaplain and moved to Temple for a few years. He then move to where he set up his camp in Salado. He has worked with a number of other children's camps in the Bell County area.

His current camp has been going since January 2012.
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