CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) — A 33-year-old Englewood man was sentenced to 50 years in prison for using his role as a youth pastor to sexually assault a pair of teenage boys.

Joseph Potts was sentenced Tuesday in Arapahoe District Court. He pleaded guilty September 24 to Sexual Explotation of a Child and First Assault, both felonies.

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Potts was a youth pastor at Jubilee Fellowship Church in 2017. He befriended the teens and invited them to stay overnight at his apartment to play video games, according to prosecutors. However, Potts showed the boys pornography and initiated sex acts with them.

“There is likely a special place in hell for those who satisfy their lascivious sexual desires under the guise of being a youth pastor,” said District Attorney George Brauchler. “We can, at best, protect ourselves from him in this life. His true sentence awaits him in the next.”

Joseph Potts

Joseph Potts (credit: 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office)

Senior Deputy District Attorney Danielle Jaramillo, who prosecuted the case, praised the two boys for stepping forward and providing detailed testimony.

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“Mr. Potts is the most dangerous type of criminal,” Jaramillo said. “He used a religious position of leadership in order to gain the trust of parents so that he had access to their children. These parents trusted that their children would be safe when alone with the defendant, and he took advantage of that trust in the worst way.

“This sentence is due to the bravery and courage of two boys … If not for them, Mr. Potts would have done this again to other children. They truly are heroes.”

Several other charges were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

After his release, Potts must register as a sex offender.

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