Plumber finds money linked to burglary behind walls of Joel Osteen church


Joel Osteen’s church was recently criticized for receiving a $ 4.4 million Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan, to which the church responded with loan repayment statements. However, recent developments may find additional cash in the church treasury.

A Houston plumber doing repairs at Lakewood Church, where Ye had previously spoken alongside infamous televangelist Osteen, discovered $ 600,000 behind the insulation of a loose toilet.

Joe Raedle / Getty Images

The money was reported stolen in a burglary in 2014, when the church claimed that $ 200,000 in cash and $ 400,000 in checks had been removed from the church safe. The money was never found, despite a $ 25,000 reward offered by the Houston Crime Stoppers for any information leading to the suspect’s arrest at the time.

The plumber shared his experience when he called a radio show in Houston, revealing that he discovered the money stuffed in around 500 envelopes, hidden in the walls behind the toilet.

“There was a loose toilet in the wall and we removed the tiles,” he said on 100.3 FM, on “The Morning Bullpen With George Mo and Erik”. “We went to remove the toilet, I removed some insulation and about 500 envelopes fell off the wall.

After its discovery, the plumber reported the incident to a maintenance supervisor and the money was returned to the church. The money has been confirmed by authorities in Houston to be linked to the 2014 crime.

After inspecting the found checks, the police were able to link the money to the uncovered case. “Evidence from the recovered checks suggests this November case is linked to a March 9, 2014 theft report of undisclosed sums of money from the church,” police said in an official statement.

Despite the $ 25,000 reward offered years ago, police say the statute of limitations for the reward has already expired. Although a $ 5,000 reward remains, the money is only released if the information identifies or apprehends a suspect. George Lindsey, host of the show, noted that the plumber was frustrated that he hadn’t heard from authorities since he found the money on November 10.

Noting that the plumber had essentially solved a case that had not been resolved for nearly a decade, Lindsey felt the plumber was entitled to some sort of compensation.

“He was the one who found it,” Lindsey said. “If he had never done this job behind that toilet, they would never have known the money was there.”

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