November 15, 2005

Pastor charged with criminal sexual conduct

Minneapolis Star-Tribune

Robert Franklin, Star Tribune
Last update: November 14, 2005 at 4:42 PM

A pastor in Lake Crystal, Minn., has been charged with criminal sexual conduct involving a young parishioner he was counseling.

The Rev. James Michael Holthus, 51, appeared Monday in Blue Earth County District Court in Mankato. He was held on $200,000 bail by Judge Kurt Johnson.

Holthus, pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Lake Crystal, was arrested Thursday following a search of his home and church office during which a computer was seized.

Chris Rosengren, the pastor’s attorney, said Holthus “adamantly” asserts his innocence, looks forward to clearing his name in a trial and wants to thank those supporting and praying for him. Parishioners have started a defense fund, he said.

Posted by kshaw at November 15, 2005 09:22 AM