Oklahoma City Police arrested Michael Coghill on Wednesday after he was recorded touching the nine-year-old victim. When the victim’s father reportedly confronted Coghill, a physical altercation ensued which left the pastor with a cracked skull, black eye, and bloody nose.
“There’s hardly any words that are camera appropriate,” said Lisa Ward, who witnessed the incident. “It’s just sickening.”
The victim told his parents and the police that he would see Coghill jogging near his bus stop and that the pastor stopped by his area on multiple occasions. On Monday, the boy told his parents Coghill touched him and made him feel uncomfortable, which led his father to wait at the bus stop on Wednesday.
“He knew the time he would be there every day,” Ward said of Coghill. “That was the hardest part, the most disgusting part.”
The boy’s father waited in the car as Coghill paused his jog to approach the nine-year-old. The father recorded Coghill placing his hand on his son’s side before moving to the buttocks area. After recording the act, the father tackled Coghill and left him with a fractured skull and cracked orbital socket. The victim’s dad also gave his recording to the police.
While local residents confirmed Coghill was a local pastor, the police did not confirm if the boy’s father attacked Coghill due to the Open Records Act.
Lakehoma Church of Christ, the place where Coghill served as a pastor, issued a statement on the incident and said they have “no tolerance” for the allegations against Coghill.
“We were heartbroken to learn of the incident involving one of our adult ministers, and our hearts go out to the child and family involved,” the statement read. “We were shocked at this news as he had a clean background check, and we have received no reports or claims against him during his tenure. Church leadership has no tolerance for any type of abuse and is meeting tonight to discuss next steps. We will cooperate with authorities as needed.”
Coghill is currently being held in Oklahoma County Detention Center on a count of lewd acts to a child.