The very wealthy pastor of a New York church was attacked by robbers in the middle of a service and was relieved of jewelry worth more than a million dollars (970,000 euros). As Lamor Miller-Whitehead was delivering a sermon on having confidence in the face of difficult circumstances, three gunmen stormed his Brooklyn borough church, police said on Monday (local time).
The robbers drew weapons and asked the clergyman and his wife, Asia K. DosReis-Whitehead, to hand over their belongings.
The service was streamed live on the internet. The church has since removed the video showing the robbery from its social media channels. It shows Miller-Whitehead suddenly lying on his stomach on the floor in front of his pulpit as the suspects enter the worship room. You can hear him on the videos saying, "All right, all right." Shortly thereafter, a man with a black face mask appears in the picture, who approaches the pastor and then stuffs his jewelry into his pocket.
Miller-Whitehead is known for an extravagant lifestyle, his eye-catching glasses also attract attention, most recently he was often spotted in his Rolls Royce in the Big Apple. The 44-year-old is considered a close friend of New York Mayor Eric Adams, who condemned the robbery of his church.
Miller-Whitehead founded his church, Leaders of Tomorrow International Ministries, in 2013 after serving a five-year sentence on identity fraud and grand larceny charges. He claims that he was wrongly convicted at the time.
On Instagram, he defended the display of his wealth. He will "live his life the way God has arranged it for him," the pastor said. "It's not that I'm pretentious. It's about me buying what I want to buy.” He has the right to do so.