According to Wisconsin police, a former Kansas City area pastor was arrested after being caught using online dating apps to entice someone he thought was a teenager for sexual interaction.
Scott Patschke was formerly a pastor at the Messiah Lutheran Church in Independence. He moved to Wisconsin in August and became a pastor at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Wausau, Wisconson.
Late last month, a citizen action group called “Impact” set up a sting operation that ended in Patschke’s arrest.
According to Wausau Police, the group made a fake account on Grindr and told Patcheke they were an 18-year-old man. The group chatted for a while and then said they were a 15-year-old boy.
Police say Patschke had an explicit conversation and sent pictures of his genitals.
Members of the group, who are not affiliated with police, met up with Patschke at a Walmart, still posing as the boy.
Police investigated and charged Patschke with child enticement and exposing a child to harmful material. Patchske resigned as a pastor within the last week from the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.
Wausau Police say based on their investigation, there isn’t any evidence to suggest Patschke was involved in similar activity in the Kansas City metro.
Messiah Lutheran Church runs a popular Christian school in Independence. It sent letters home to parents on Monday stating, in part, that they are shocked and saddened by the news.
The church and school said Patschke had limited interaction with students during his time at the Independence church. The church said they don’t know of any inappropriate conduct between Patschke and children in Independence.