Charlotte, NC – Police report Michael Kelley, 32, attacked a pastor inside a church, stole his car, and robbed a local store. Police later shot and killed the suspect during a traffic stop.

Pastor Larry James, pastor at South End Presbyterian Church was alone in the church when Kelley walked in and asked how to become a Christian. It was after praying with Kelley that Pastor James says Kelley grabbed him, and with a box cutter in his hand, demanded the Pastor James keys, wallet, and phone.

The pastor sustained a cut across his cheek and one across his nose. He says once he realized Kelley didn’t have a gun, he refused to submit to his demands.

The pastor says he fought with Kelley in the hallway just outside his office for an extended period of time. As he was leaving he took the pastor’s keys and drove off in his card.

According to Spectrum News:

“I think he saw that I had a bank card. He said ‘give me your pin number,’ I said no, I’m not giving you my pin number, and he kept motioning and he finally hit me across my nose,” he said. “I finally got to the place where I could move my foot and I kicked him and he kind of fell back.”

Police later spotted the vehicle on West Boulevard which led to the search that turned into the deadly officer-involved shooting.

“Pastor James says leaders at the church were already looking at security upgrades and what happened on Wednesday will only expedite that. He also says this will not change him reaching out to people who walk into his church.”

 

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