A D.C. police officer is accused of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl at police headquarters and a 16-year-old girl at the church where the officer is pastor.
Officer Darrell Best, 45, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, was ordered held without bond on charges of first-degree sexual abuse while armed, first-degree sexual abuse of a minor, second-degree sexual abuse of a minor and third-degree sexual abuse. He is accused of sexually assaulting two members of God-Of-A Second Chance Ministry Church on Southern Avenue SE.
A 16-year-old girl told police Saturday Best sexually abused her three times at the church beginning in December. He was off-duty during the incidents, police said. According to charging documents, Best was in uniform on one occasion when he raped the girl inside the church.
The second victim, who is now 18 but was 17 at the time of the alleged incident, says she was sexually assaulted in Best's office on the fifth floor of police headquarters after he took her out to dinner Dec. 3, according to charging documents. He was wearing his badge and gun at the time.
When investigators took her to headquarters to identify the location, they initially took her to another office on another floor and she was able to tell them that wasn't where it happened. When they took her to Best's office, she cried as she entered and said that's where the assault took place, according to charging documents.
Police said they have video of Best and the victim at headquarters together. They also have access key records placing Best there.
Both girls said they pleaded with Best to stop.
Best’s attorney, Elliott Queen, declined to comment.
"The allegations against off-duty officer Darrell Best are serious and disheartening," read a statement from Chief Cathy Lanier. "The fact that he used his position as a pastor and a counselor to gain access to his victims is extremely disturbing. Once MPD became aware of the allegations, we immediately conducted an investigation, obtained a warrant and arrested him."
Best's police authority was revoked and his gun taken when the 16-year-old came forward Saturday. He was arrested about 9 p.m. Monday at his attorney's office in Largo, Maryland.
“We won’t tolerate any employee preying on young people,” Mayor Muriel Bowser said. “We know that the accused was off-duty when this happened, but we think that the process has worked and we know that he’ll face justice.”