Former Plymouth pastor sentenced on drug and prostitution charges

Published: Mar. 7, 2018 at 6:48 AM EST
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A former Plymouth pastor has been sentenced after he was arrested last year in a prostitution sting.

James Irwin, 69, pleaded guilty to two counts and was sentenced to two years in Marshall County Community Corrections.

Those charges are for dealing in a schedule II controlled substance (level 6 felony); and patronizing a prostitute (class A misdemeanor).

Six other charges were dropped as part of a plea agreement.

Irwin will have travel privileges to see family in Indianapolis, at the court's discretion.

Irwin was arrested in August of 2017 after three informants worked with police.

Irwin was the director of "Care and Share Ministries," a nonprofit aimed at helping provide emergency shelter for families in crisis.

One of the informants was a recovering opiate addict who attended "Care and Share," but the help she was offered there was not what she expected.

She says instead, Irwin exploited his role to take advantage of those in vulnerable circumstances.

"At first when I met him, I thought he was really nice," she said. "And he had helped out with the electric bill and said if I ever needed anything to come and see him.

"Then, it started getting weird, to offering to help me out with bills or child care expenses, anything I needed in return for sexual favors, that I never did, you know."

What she did do was contact authorities and agree to be wired to document her interaction with Irwin, who showed up at the door naked and offered her money and drugs for sex.

She was able to get the interaction on tape, leaving the house with money and drugs, minus the sex.

The two other informants also came forward, leading to today's plea deal and Irwin's two-year sentence.