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More child sex charges for man linked to ministry at Baylor | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey


Daniel Savala, the “spiritual mentor” linked to the arrest of former Baylor University-based Chi Alpha minister Chris Hundl, was charged last week with sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child by sexual contact by the Houston Police Department.

Savala, 67, is a registered sex offender at the center of a sexual abuse scandal plaguing Chi Alpha Ministries, a worldwide Christian college ministry affiliated with the Assemblies of God Church. Savala is alleged to have ties to the leadership of multiple Chi Alpha chapters at Texas universities, where he worked in an unofficial capacity. Hundl referred to Savala as a “spiritual mentor,” according to Hundl’s May arrest affidavit.







Savala


Since early June, Savala has been in McLennan County Jail on a local charge of continuous sexual abuse of a child, which was upgraded to a charge of continuous trafficking of a person in a September indictment. Arrest warrant affidavits in the case allege Hundl, 38, allowed Savala to sexually abuse two young family members on several occasions between summer 2021 and March 2022.

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The two new Houston charges against Savala were added Wednesday, but case information on the Harris County District Clerk website indicates the case was initially filed Aug. 15. According to an affidavit, a man reported to Houston police that Savala had sexually assaulted him on multiple occasions in 2005 when the man was 16 years old.

The affidavit says the man was introduced to Savala by a Sam Houston State University Chi Alpha youth pastor when he was 15. He told police he and the youth pastor visited Savala at his Houston home and became friends, the affidavit says. Beginning in February 2005, he began visiting Savala alone after obtaining his driver’s license, approximately two times per month for about two years, the affidavit says.

On the accuser’s first visit, Savala asked him about masturbation and pornography, and the conversations about those topics became more explicit over the next visits, according to the affidavit.

Eventually, Savala encouraged the then-teen to get naked with him, using the Biblical quote “naked and unashamed,” the affidavit says. He told police he trusted Savala and removed his clothes, after which Savala encouraged the accuser to examine Savala’s genitals, commented on the accuser’s genitals and touched the accuser’s genitals, the affidavit says.

The affidavit says the man reported many other instances of sexual abuse, including sexual touching and an incident in which Savala performed oral sex on the teen, then asked him to reciprocate, the affidavit says.

Savala has been held in the jail since June 9 on $250,000 bond, which has been increased to $350,000 following the addition of the new charges. His trial in the continuous trafficking of a person case is set to begin Feb. 12 in Waco’s 54th State District Court, where he will be represented by Huntsville attorney Bryan Cantrell.

Savala has been associated with multiple chapters of Chi Alpha since at least 1989. A 1989 article from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette yearbook refers to Savala as a “Chi Alpha staff member and world traveled missionary,” but Assemblies of God officials said in a statement that was a “captioning error,” and that Savala did not hold credentials with Assemblies of God and never served as an official Chi Alpha staff member.

In 2012, Savala was charged with 11 counts of sexual abuse of a child in Alaska, and was convicted on one of the charges as part of a plea deal. According to a Ketchikan Daily News article, Savala worked as a youth minister at Clover Pass Community Church in Ketchikan, Alaska, from 1995 to 1997. An assistant district attorney quoted in the article said Savala used his authoritative role to “groom” young boys to engage in sexual acts.

Savala was sentenced to two years in prison in the case, but only served 90 days and was required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. The length of the sentence was in part due to the fact the crime took place before stricter sentencing guidelines for sex offenders were implemented in Alaska, the article says.

In June, another Clover Pass Church leader, Dwight Chris John, 71, was indicted in Alaska on 17 child sexual abuse charges.

In addition to Hundl, Will Robinson, the former minister of Chi Alpha at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, was arrested in July and charged with continuous sexual abuse of a child, sexual assault of a child, indecency with a child by exposure and two counts of indecency with a child by sexual contact. Hundl previously served at the Corpus Christi Chi Alpha chapter before moving to Waco in 2019 to found the Baylor chapter.







Christopher Hundl

Hundl


Baylor officials said in May that the Chi Alpha chapter at the school was suspended and under investigation, emphasizing Hundl was not a Baylor employee.

Officials from the Assemblies of God North District Council said Hundl was dismissed as a credentialed minister May 31. He was released from jail May 24 on $50,000 bond after being arrested the day before.

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