A church treasurer embezzled nearly $200,000 from New England Bible Church, but won’t be prosecuted as the church declined to press charges.
Nicholas Desrosiers of Hudson, New Hampshire, admitted taking the funds, according to the police report.
“We are unable to move forward unless the victim is willing to sign onto the charges,” said Lt. Edward Guy, spokesperson for the Andover Police Department, adding that the church’s senior pastor, Rev. Tyler Thompson, declined pursuing charges.
Desrosiers set up a plan to pay restitution with the church directly, which is why Thompson declined to pursue charges, Guy said.
“Typically you don’t see such a large sum of money where the victim sets up restitution,” Guy said.
Thompson and Desrosiers did not respond to requests for comment.
Thompson originally reached out to the police in February by walking in to tell them about how a Citizens Bank fraud investigator reached out to him because of suspicious activity, the police report said. Bank account records showed $187,000 flowing in and out of the account that had only $17 remaining on the day the investigator reached out to Thompson, according to the report.
“Mr. Thompson was unaware there was an existing account with Citizens because the church conducts their business with (redacted) Bank in Andover,” the police report stated.
Thompson told the police he believed Desrosiers used this account to deposit the church’s weekly offerings.
New England Bible Church was started by Thompson’s father, the Rev. Chip Thompson in 1982 as a bible study, The Eagle-Tribune previously reported. The group eventually built the church on Chandler Road in 1993 fueled by member’s donations.
The church has three staff members including Thompson, an associate pastor and a secretary, according to its website. The church also regularly donates and conducts mission trips to Guatemala.
New England Bible Church is also working to open a new sister church in Chester, New Hampshire, according to its website. The church opened a “church plant” at Chester’s Steven’s Memorial Hall in September with hopes to build a nearby church, according to the website.
It’s unclear how the stolen funds will impact the church.