At a hearing on May 15, Solano County Judge Robert Bowers decided to dismiss one of several fraud-related charges against legally entangled Baptist Pastor Mark Lewis. The fraud charges originated after Lewis attempted to post $500,000 bail in a separate case for which he will be tried on charges he allegedly paid to have his ex-girlfriend’s home firebombed back on January 9.
At an evidentiary hearing in April, witnesses testified that Lewis posted the half-million dollars in bail on the arson charge by using his church’s property as collateral. The bail agent’s insurance company scrutinized the church documents in question and prosecutors argued that the property had fraudulently been transferred to Lewis to secure his release from jail. Judge Bowers said he concluded that members of the Fellowship Baptist Church wanted to see Lewis get bailed out so he could return to performing his role as pastor. The judge also stated that those most upset about the fraud charges were law enforcement and DA’s Office personnel.
“I don’t see much of a case here,” Bowers said regarding the single fraud charge he dismissed. While Bowers left in place two more fraud charges; he did cut the $75,000 bond Lewis had to post in connection with the fraud allegations. But Lewis remained lodged in Solano County Jail after the May 15 hearing in connection with the arson allegations. His bail on those charges remains set at $500,000.
A probable cause hearing into the alleged firebombing of Sarah Nottingham’s Vacaville home is set to be heard on June 2 in Solano County Superior Court.