A plumber alleged that he found multiple envelopes filled with checks and cash at Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas when he was doing work in the building. Lakewood is led by the senior pastor and author, Joel Osteen.
The shocking discovery is believed to relate to an incident that occurred on March 9, 2014 case when $600,000 was reported missing from the church. The Houston police noted that $200,000 in cash had been taken, along with $400,000 worth of checks.
The news was first reported on the radio morning show the “Morning Bullpen” on the station 100.3 The Bull. Its host, Bull George Lindsey said that a “caller” phoned in about the news.
“There was a loose toilet in the wall, and we removed the tile,” the caller said. “We went to go remove the toilet, and I moved some insulation away and about 500 envelopes fell out of the wall, and I was like ‘Oh wow!’”
The caller claimed that the envelopes were filled with checks and cash. “I went ahead and contacted the maintenance supervisor that was there, and I turned it all in,” the caller added.
In a Twitter statement, the Houston police confirmed that officers responded to a report that was discovered at Lakewood on November 10 and was told by church members that a “large amount of money, including cash, checks and money orders were found in the walls.
Response on investigation at 3700 Southwest Freeway:#hounews pic.twitter.com/9rssUllblJ
— Houston Police (@houstonpolice) December 3, 2021
Crime Stoppers of Houston offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of a suspect at the time of the theft in 2014. This has led some to wonder if the plumber who discovered money in the walls will be rewarded.
Lakewood Church also confirmed the discovery.
“Recently, while repair work was being done at Lakewood Church, an undisclosed amount of cash and checks were found,” reads an official statement. “Lakewood immediately notified the Houston Police Department and is assisting them with their investigation. Lakewood has no further comment at this time.”