MEGACHURCH PASTOR Zachery Tims who was found dead in a New York City hotel room may have died after taking drugs according to new reports.
A white powdery substance believed to be narcotics was discovered on his body, The Wall Street Journal reports.
New York City police said 42-year-old Orlando pastor was found dead on the floor of a room at the W Hotel in Times Square on August 12. There was no criminal activity suspected. The medical examiner will determine the cause of death.
According to his church's website and Facebook page, Tims was the senior pastor of New Destiny Christian Center in Apopka, Florida, which is one of the largest congregations in Central Florida. He also hosted and appeared on Christian television and radio programs.
An online Facebook page dedicated to the memory of pastor Tims has more than ten thousand members, One user wrote: “When I was younger I always wanted to come to your church and be part of your youth…but I NEVER got a chance to….. Pastor Tims you were truely a man of GOD. No matter what negative anyone has to say who are they to judge ? We miss you and your soul be at rest.”
Rev Tims' body was discovered by a hotel worker trying to check the minibar, the Journal reports.
CBNNews claimed that Tims started New Destiny Christian Center in 1996 after overcoming a troubled past, including attempted murder charges and drug addiction. His sermons have reached millions of people around the world, and he regularly appeared on the Trinity Broadcasting Network program "Praise the Lord."
Church members and others posted a flurry of messages mourning the loss of the popular pastor on Facebook and Twitter late Sunday.
In 2009, Tims and his wife Riva divorced after he admitted to a year-long affair with a stripper. The couple had been married for 15 years, the Journal reports.