Because New York recently extended the statute of limitations for reporting rape, “a criminal complaint…might still be timely,” according to the report, “though that would not be expected to implicate the Church itself.” The window for civil damages likely has passed, investigators add.
Noting the difficulty of parsing he-said-she-said testimony, the report states, “It is difficult if not impossible to say with certainty whether the initial sexual acts…occurred notwithstanding an express, verbal objection (‘No’) uttered by [the woman] in the moment.” It adds, “Without discounting the strength of a prosecution case due to the passage of time, it is likely that a jury, evaluating the interplay, would have found that Mr. Bogard acted without obtaining (or, under the circumstances, having any reasonable expectation of being able to obtain) actual consent.”
Alleged Victim Says She Had to Sign an NDA
Another revelation from the report involves a non-disclosure agreement. As the sexual relationship became ongoing, the accuser says, Reed Bogard told her she had to sign an NDA “contract” to keep her job. Investigators write, “No compelling legitimate reason was given by Mr. Bogard for why this demand was made in the middle of the affair. And this is yet another example of the abuse of power that seems to have permeated the entire relationship.”
Other details from the January 2021 report point to heavy drinking, marijuana use, and bullying behavior by Bogard. Among co-workers, the pastor “had a reputation for aggression, verbal abuse, and unreasonable demands.” Even during his interview with investigators, they write, he “did present as aggressive.”
In New York, Bogard worked with Carl Lentz, who was fired in late 2020 for “moral failures,” including an extramarital affair. Bogard, who now works in real estate, told The Christian Post he wouldn’t comment because he had “nothing to do with Hillsong anymore.” His social media accounts appear to be removed.
The accuser, meanwhile, has confirmed she was deposed in the matter but has requested privacy.
This is a developing story, and ChurchLeaders will update it with any new information that arises.