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Escondido Police Department
Friday December 28th, 2018 :: 08:17 p.m. PST



CONTACT: Lt. Chris Lick
DATE: 12-28-2018
PHONE: (760) 839-4444

In November, 2018, the Escondido Police Department initiated a child molestation investigation involving 66-year-old John Rodgers McFarland, a resident of Fullerton, CA. The incidents occurred several years ago when McFarland was visiting relatives in Escondido. McFarland is the current pastor of the Orangethorpe United Methodist Church in Fullerton, CA.

On December 18th, John Rodgers McFarland was arrested in Fullerton, with the assistance of the Fullerton and Fountain Valley Police Departments. Immediately following his arrest, search warrants were served at his residence in Fullerton, his place of employment, and the Fountain Valley United Methodist church in Fountain Valley. He was booked into the Vista Detention Facility for one count of child molestation.

We believe there are additional victims that have yet to be identified in other jurisdictions. Anyone with additional information is asked to call Det. Therese Ruiz at 760-839-4790.

Please follow the police department via Facebook at and Twitter (@EscondidoPolice).

To report any suspicious activities in your neighborhood, you may contact the Police Department directly, or you may make an unidentified call on our Anonymous Tip Line at 760-743-TIPS (8477) or via our Web site at For breaking news releases, please follow the Escondido Police Department on Twitter at


Escondido Police Department
1163 N. Centre City Parkway
Escondido, CA 92026

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 760-839-4722

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