Former pastor pleads guilty to sexual exploitation

STORY COUNTY- A former Boone pastor has pleaded guilty to two counts of Sexual Exploitation by a Counselor or Therapist, according to Story County court documents. 

Joel Mark Waltz, 48, was charged in March in with two counts of sexual exploitation after police said Waltz began a relationship with a student before she turned 18 years old. According to criminal complaints, Waltz met the victim when she was 11 years old, and confessed his love for her when she was 16. 

The plea agreement filed Monday asks for a two-year prison term on each count to be ran consecutively, as requested by the state. Waltz admitted in the plea agreement that he "kissed a person who was emotionally dependent on me as a counselor...[the] kissing was for the purpose of arousing or satisfying my sexual desires". 

Waltz will be sentenced November 15. 

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