Man stole $170K from Nashville churches to support cocaine addiction

Kenneth Stopkotte

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A man was sentenced to 45 months in prison Monday for stealing donation checks from Nashville church mailboxes.

Kenneth Stopkotte, 49, said in a letter to the judge that he stole the money to fund a cocaine addiction.

According to a plea agreement, Stopkotte stole more than $181,000 from numerous Nashville-area churches between Aug. 2012 and Feb. 2013. He also used another person’s credit card to charge more than $13,000.

Stopkotte already is serving a four-year sentence in a related Williamson County case. Stopkotte failed to show up at sentencing in that case, and authorities later found him in Mexico.

On Monday, he received the additional sentence, to be served concurrently. He also was ordered to pay almost $170,000 in restitution.

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