A former Army Chaplain and Founder of Patriot Kids Ministries Camp has been arrested on an outstanding Bexar County warrant for indecency with a child.

Bell County Deputies arrested 63 year old John Phillip Tidball late Monday night at the Patriot Kids camp in Salado. He is charged with two counts of indecency with a child by contact.  Tidball is being held at the Bell County Jail on $75,000 bond. He will be extradited to Bexar County.


According to the Bell County Sheriff's Office, the alleged victim, who is now in her 20's, says she was sexually assaulted from the age of 8 to 14.

The Bell County Sheriff's Department says the victim had reported the sexual abuse for many years, but no agency was able to file charges.

When she found out he was running a kid's church camp, she filed the charges with Bexar County in Oct. 2013 and they put out the warrant for his arrest.


Tidball lived in Temple and then Salado after he retired from the Army in 2008 as a lieutenant colonel chaplain.  He served for 31 years, during which he was assigned to different installations including Fort Hood and Fort Campbell, Ky., authorities said Tuesday.

Tidball is also facing a military sodomy charge filed in January 2013 at Fort Campbell in connection with an alleged incident involving the same victim, authorities said.

Tidball founded the Bell County Patriot Kids Ministries in January 2012.  The camp provides day and overnight activities as well as backyard and after-school Bible clubs for military children. Tidball is the ministry's executive director.