Man charged with murdering 62-year-old NYC church caretaker


Police on Thursday arrested a man accused of gunning down a 62-year-old church caretaker at his Brooklyn house of worship earlier in the week.

Moriyah Lewis, 39, was charged with murdering Edward James in the vestibule of Glorious Church of God in Bedford-Stuyvesant about 5:10 p.m. Monday, cops said.

James, who was shot in the torso, was taken to Kings County Hospital and pronounced dead, police said.

Following James’ death, which came amid a surge in violence across the city, community leaders called on elected officials to help end the violence.

“To have someone shot in the church, it really hurts to the core,” community advocate Tony Herbert lamented a day after James was killed.

“We have seriously insane people on our street, and we gotta get ’em off these streets,” Herbert raged. “And Mayor de Blasio, the blood is on your hands! Where the hell are you? Where are you?”

James, a recovering alcoholic, was taken in by the church, which “transformed his life,” local clergyman Bishop Gerald Seabrook had said.

39 year old Moriyah Lewis is walked out of the 81st Precinct in Brooklyn on homicide charges relating to the killing of a church caretaker.
39-year-old Moriyah Lewis is walked out of the 81st Precinct in Brooklyn on homicide charges relating to the killing of a church caretaker.William C. Lopez

The victim was a fixture in the neighborhood, described by several friends as the “mayor” of the community. He was often spotted sprucing up the outside of the church and remembered as somebody who would always lend a helping hand.



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