Pastor pleads no contest to arson, stalking girlfriend


The former pastor of the Fellowship Baptist Church in Vacaville pleaded no contest Thursday to arson of his former girlfriend’s home and stalking.

Mark Wayne Lewis, 40, pleaded no contest during the third day of his trial in Solano County Superior Court. Judge Dwight Ely indicated he would sentence Lewis to eight years in prison on Feb. 18.

The prosecution objected to the indicated sentence and argued for additional time, Solano County District Attorney Krishna Abrams said in a news release. Abrams said the maximum prison sentence is 14 years for felony stalking and arson of an inhabited dwelling with an enhancement of using an accelerant against his former girlfriend.

The stalking occurred between Dec. 1, 2013, and Jan. 9, 2014, Abrams said. The arson of Lewis’ former girlfriend’s home on Chateau Circle in Vacaville occurred around 3:30 a.m. on Jan. 9. No one was injured when a Molotov cocktail was thrown into the home and damage to the home was minor, police said.¬†Six people, including three children, were asleep at the time, police said.

Lewis was arrested at the church at 3321 Farrell Road on Jan. 9. Three people who were found in a rented vehicle minutes after the arson was reported also were arrested in connection with the arson.

Kristin A. Broyles, 31, of Citrus Heights and Anthony Newbolt, 34, of Sacramento, agreed to plead guilty. Richerd Wright, 29, of Sacramento, faces a trial on March 17. Newbolt and Broyles said they were staying at the Fellowship Baptist Church because they were homeless, police said.

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