Guilty plea entered in Lima church vandalism


By J Swygart - jswygart@limanews.com



Litke

Litke


Shaeffer-Winget

Shaeffer-Winget


Litke, left, and Shaeffer-Winget, right


LIMA — A 22-year-old Delphos woman will be sentenced Dec. 9 for her role in vandalizing a Lima church this summer.

Natashia Shaeffer-Winget pleaded guilty Monday in Allen County Common Pleas Court to a charge of vandalism, a fourth-degree felony, in exchange for the dismissal by prosecutors of a charge of desecration.

Police said Shaeffer-Winget and co-defendant Theron Litke caused extensive damage to the New Life Assembly Church, 1003 E. Kibby St., Lima, by spray-painting three sides of the church’s exterior and throwing eggs at the structure.

The acts of vandalism were discovered the morning of June 20 when Pastor Bob Wardle arrived at the church. He was greeted by large spray-painted message on the church’s exterior that read “God is a woman and she is gay.” Other graffiti written on the walls included “Love is love,” “God is dead” and “Be kind.”

Profane references to President Donald Trump were also spray-painted on the walls of the non-denominational church founded in 2007. The front entrance of New Life Assembly was not defaced, but the east, west and north-side exterior walls were vandalized with graffiti and eggs, as was a detached shed on the property.

Litke has already been accepted into a diversion program in lieu of prosecution. Shaeffer-Winget was offered a similar option but saw that deal revoked when she failed to appear for a court hearing in September.

Litke and Shaeffer-Winget will reimburse the New Life Assembly $250 each.

Litke
https://www.limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2019/11/web1_Church-vandalism-....-Litke-Theron.jpgLitke
Shaeffer-Winget
https://www.limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2019/11/web1_church-vandalism...-Shaeffer-Winget.jpgShaeffer-Winget
Litke, left, and Shaeffer-Winget, right
https://www.limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2019/11/web1_Combined.jpgLitke, left, and Shaeffer-Winget, right

By J Swygart

jswygart@limanews.com

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