Wednesday, May 02, 2007                                                                                       View Comments

Pastor leads double life

SPOKANE WA -- One man has been arrested after a short pursuit that ended at Division and Indiana.Officers are investigating a possible kidnapping at Shari's at Indiana an Monroe. According to police, someone tried to stop the kidnapper, and that person was assaulted by the suspect.

The suspect then fled to a nearby McDonalds. Police found his silver corvette in the parking lot. The suspect put his car in reverse striking two officers, then hit a police car.

Police say the suspect also rammed a patrol car several times. A short pursuit followed.

The man was arrested at a stop light at Indiana and Division. Police used a taser to subdue him.

He was taken to the hospital for treatment and for a mental evaluation.

UPDATE, 3:30pm Monday:
Members of the Morning Star Baptist Church confirm 49-year-old Herman Lewis, arrested this morning after leading Spokane Police on a chase this morning, is their senior pastor. Lewis is charged with unlawful imprisonment and two counts of assault. He's now in the Spokane County Jail.

UPDATE, 9:30pm
Spokane County Jail officials say Herman Lewis is still at the jail, but in lockdown because he was considered combative and a threat to himself and officers when he was booked this afternoon.

According to his resume, Rev. Herman Lewis Sr. began his career as pastor near his hometown of Winnie, Texas. Between 1980 and 2003 Lewis lived in Austin and Galveston. He was a chaplain for a county jail, a local hospital, and helped build a new baptist church for 400 members. In 2003, he joined the People's Institutional Baptist Church in Seattle. Nothing on his resume has been verified.

Lewis recently reported that he left an $80,000 managerial job at a Seattle Holiday Inn to become the pastor of Spokane's Morning Star Baptist Church last year. The congregation recently moved to a building on West Rowan.

Lewis is charged with Unlawful Imprisonment and Assault.

UPDATE, 3pm Tuesday:
49-year-old Rev. Herman Lewis appeared in Spokane Co. Superior Court this afternoon on charges of assault and attempted kidnapping. According to court documents, Lewis told detectives he went to the Shari's Restaurant near Indiana and Monroe to meet a woman to have sex with.

Lewis also told police he had been living "a double life" since turning 19 by having sex with prostitutes and regularly using crack cocaine and PCP.

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UPDATE: May 4


More charges filed against pastor


The Spokane pastor who led police on a 10 block chase in a Corvette had additional charges filed against him Thursday.

Herman Lewis, 49, now faces a first-degree attempted rape charge as well as an indecent liberties charge in connection with the April 30 incident.

Lewis – pastor of Morning Star Baptist Church – is charged with attempting to abduct and rape a waitress at Shari's Restaurant at Monroe Street and Northwest Boulevard.

Police said in court documents that Lewis attempted to pay the waitress $50 to have sex with him in a Corvette parked outside. When the waitress refused, Lewis then tried to grab the woman and force her out.

If Lewis is convicted of all charges, he faces at least 20 years in prison. He remained in the Spokane County Jail on Thursday night.

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