South Bay youth pastor arrested for alleged sexual assault of minor, police say

San Jose police said Brett Bymaster was arrested on Thursday, April 11, 2024, suspected of sexual assault of a minor.

A San Jose youth pastor has been arrested on charges of sexually assaulting a minor, police said. 

Brett Bymaster, 47, was taken into custody in the Central Valley in Manteca on Thursday, following a months-long investigation by San Jose Police Department’s child exploitation detectives.

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Investigators said the alleged sexual assault began in 2014, when the suspect served as a youth pastor at the River Church Community located on Lincoln Avenue.

"During the course of the investigation, an adult female survivor disclosed that an adult male suspect sexually assaulted her multiple times between 2014 and 2018 when she was a minor," police said in a press release.

In a statement to KTVU, the River Church said that Bymaster was employed there from 2014 to 2019 and that the suspect was at the center of a denominational inquiry in 2021 as well as the subject of "an ongoing third-party investigation initiated by the victim families and embraced by the church’s professional and board leadership." 

The church said it learned of the arrest last week and has been fully cooperating with the police investigation.

"We are deeply saddened by these developments and continue to express our concerns, prayers, and support for the young people who have bravely raised their voices, for all victims of abuse, and for our entire church community during these distressing times." River Church officials said.

Investigators said Bymaster was also linked to after-school programs outside the church. They did not identify those programs, telling KTVU that it was an ongoing investigation. 

Bymaster was booked into the Santa Clara County Jail on charges of sexual assault of a minor. He's scheduled to appear in court on Friday.   

Bail has been set at $400,000. 

Anyone with information about this case was asked to contact the San Jose Police Department Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force at 408-273-2959 or by email at