A former Louisville church employee was arrested Thursday and accused of sending sexual photos and videos to an investigator in an undercover probe.
Nicholas James Lynch, 33, who worked at Highview Baptist Church as a research assistant and curriculum writer, was arrested following a month-long investigation, according to the Kentucky attorney general’s office.
Image captured from WDRB video
Through a social media app, Lynch sent a minor sexual images of himself and requested sexual images of the minor. He also said he discussed meeting the minor to perform sex acts and livestreamed video of himself to detectives while he engaged in sexual contact, the attorney general’s office said.
Investigators determined some of Lynch’s illegal communications occurred at the church and interviewed him there where he admitted discussing sex and sending images to a minor he met online.
In a statement from Aaron Harvie, the senior pastor at Highview, the church said it was “devastated” about what has happened.
“As far as we know from the limited information we’ve received, the accusations against Nick do not involve anyone else associated with Highview Baptist Church, our school or any of our ministries.”
The church said it would be transparent and share appropriate information with its members.
“We are shocked by the nature of the accusations, but we also know that we live in a fallen and broken world and we pray for Nick,” the statement said. “We are cooperating fully as the investigation and legal process unfold.”
Lynch is a former doctoral student at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky. He was not enrolled in any courses for this academic year, a spokesperson for the seminary told the Biblical Recorder.
“In any situation where a student is subject to criminal charges, or any serious moral charge, and/or their local church rescinds their affirmation, that student is withdrawn immediately until the matter is resolved,” SBTS said in a statement to the Recorder.
(EDITOR’S NOTE – This article was first published at KentuckyToday.com and has been edited by Biblical Recorder staff. Used by permission.)