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Pastor Murdered in Pulpit Accused of Rape

Suspect’s wife in pastor killing had filed rape complaint against victim

The wife of a Louisiana man charged with killing a preacher had filed a rape complaint against the pastor two days before the shooting, but it’s not yet clear if there was an assault or a consensual sexual relationship, a sheriff said Monday.

Woodrow Karey is charged with fatally shooting 53-year-old Ronald Harris Sr. during a revival service Friday at the Tabernacle of Praise Worship Center in Lake Charles. Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Monday that Harris and the suspect’s wife had exchanged text messages before she filed the rape complaint. The sheriff’s department says Karey found the messages on his wife’s cellphone on Sept. 21, a few days before she filed the complaint and less than a week before the shooting.

It’s not clear if there was a consensual relationship or not, and that will be a focus of the investigation, Mancuso said.

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