BENSON, N.C. (WNCN) — A Johnston County Sunday School teacher convicted of committing sex crimes against multiple young girls will spend at least 87 years in prison.

A jury convicted Johnathan David Young, 38, on Monday of multiple counts of rape, sex offense and taking indecent liberties with children. Superior Court Judge George B. Collins then sentenced him to a minimum 87 years and maximum of 109 years in prison.

Young met the girls while attending and serving as a Sunday School teacher at Firstborn Baptist Church in Benson for several years.

“Thankfully this sexual predator will never again be able to harm another child,” said Paul Jackson, the county’s senior assistant district attorney.

CBS 17 reported in 2018 that complaints against Young, involving two underage girls, dated back to 2003 and investigators had been looking into the incidents since 2014. At that time, Young was charged with six charges of first-degree rape of a child, three charges of statutory rape, two charges of first-degree sexual offense and two charges of indecent liberties with a child.

On Monday in the courtroom, the conviction sentencing by the jury involved crimes against three children from the same 11-year time frame. Much of the child abuse did occur within the church, Jackson said in a release.

The jury found him guilty after a two-week trial, the release said.

The jury also heard from two witnesses who were “sexually abused by the defendant when they were young children,” Jackson said.

In a statement, Jackson said:

The Johnston County District Attorney’s Office is please with the verdicts and the sentence imposed. Our hearts go out to the brave survivors who had the courage to disclose and testify in this case. Everyone in our community owes them a debt of gratitude. Their courage in the face of such harsh judgement and scrutiny was amazing and an example of true heroism.

We thank lead investigator Lt. Jaime Snipes and the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office for their hard work in this very complicated and difficult case.

Thankfully this sexual predator will never again be able to harm another child. The Johnston County District Attorney’s Office will continue to aggressively pursue and bring to justice those who prey upon the children in our community.”

Paul T. Jackson, Johnston County Senior Assistant District Attorney