Russell Thompson, 55, an associate pastor with Houston’s City of Refuge Presbyterian Church, is facing felony charges of aggravated theft. Thompson is accused of stealing over $200,000 worth of church donations from his congregation.
According to court reports the pastor allegedly created a separate bank account in the church’s name and took checks addressed to the church from members and deposited them into a secret bank account. The check donations that were intended for the church totaled $284, 503.
Thompson had been depositing church donations into the account for over a two-year period.
Representatives from City of Refuge told reporters, “The indictment speaks for itself. We trust the justice system and we do believe justice will be served.”
Attorney Tyrone Moncrieff said that his client admits to stealing the money and is asking forgiveness from the community and congregation.
Thompson has an upcoming court date on April 14. He is currently released on a half million-dollar bond.
City of Refuge Presbyterian Church is located in the 3100 block of Yellowstone near Old Spanish Trail.