On Thursday, September 19, 2019, Orlando Martinez-Chavez, age 48, of Jersey City, was convicted by a Hudson County jury of one count of Sexual Assault, a second-degree crime, and one count of Endangering the Welfare of a Child, a third-degree crime, following a full day of trial testimony. The jury deliberated for approximately three hours before returning their guilty verdict to the two-count indictment. Martinez-Chavez was a pastor at the Iglesia Pentecostal Lirio de los Valles church in Jersey City when he sexually assaulted a 10-year old female member of the church in 2013.
Martinez-Chavez faces up to 10 years in State prison for the Sexual Assault conviction and must serve 85 percent of his sentence before he is eligible for parole. He also faces five years on the Endangering the Welfare of a Child conviction. The conviction will subject Martinez-Chavez to registration under Megan’s Law and Parole Supervision for Life.
Judge Patrick J. Arre, J.S.C. presided over the trial. Judge Arre is scheduled to sentence the defendant on December 13, 2019.
The State was represented by Assistant Prosecutor Angela Gingerelli Cunningham. The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit investigated the case.