Crime

Pastor Accused Of Hiring Homeless To Firebomb Ex-Girlfriend’s Home

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

California Pastor Mark Lewis is accused of hiring three homeless people to throw Molotov cocktails at the home of his ex-girlfriend, who lives in Vacaville with her parents.

“I think he’s just a coward, who hides behind a suit and a tie and a Bible,” ex-girlfriend Sarah Nottingham, who was home with her three children when an explosive device was thrown into her bedroom window, told KCRA-TV.

Police arrested three people in a nearby rental car – Anthony Newbolt, 33, Kristen Broyles, 30, and Richerd Wright, 28.

Newbolt, Broyles, and Wright told police they are homeless and staying at Fellowship Baptist Church, where Lewis is pastor.

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Lewis, 39, was not in the vehicle but police later arrested him in connection with the incident.

He is the suspect in four other crimes relating to Nottingham, including an incident in which the bushes in her parents’ yard were set on fire and two separate incidents of vandalism on her car and on her sister-in-law’s car.

The arrest was no comfort to Nottingham.

“I don’t feel completely safe at this time either because of how he works with basically organized crime and has people do things for him,” she told KTXL Fox 40.

She believes Lewis wants to kill her.

“He told me he wasn’t ready for it to be over, basically threatened me that he had nothing to lose and that he would stop at nothing,” she told KCRA-TV. “I think he’s just a coward who hides behind a suit and tie and a bible. There’s no way any sort of man of God could act the way he does.”

Lewis denies any involvement in the firebombing.

“No, I would not want to kill her. That’s a pretty intense statement,” he said. “And the cocktail statement? I don’t know. I don’t know anything. That’s going to come out.”

He was booked into Solano County Jail on arson charges, conspiracy and stalking. He is being held on $500,000 bail.

The other three suspects were charged with arson of an inhabited dwelling and possession of an incendiary device.

Sources: CBS Sacramento, KTXL Fox 40KCRA-TV