Preacher allegedly had blind man killed

April 25, 2009 at 2:05 AM

BALTIMORE, April 25 (UPI) -- A Baltimore preacher was charged Friday with having a blind man killed so he could collect $1 million in life insurance.

Kevin Jerome Pushia, 32, allegedly paid $50,000 for a hit on Lemuel Wallace, who was found shot several times in a bathroom at a Baltimore park in February, The Baltimore Sun reported Saturday. Pushia apparently met Wallace, who was also developmentally disabled, while he was working as an operations manager for a group that assists the disabled.

Pushia was pastor of the Church of Deliverance, which opened in 2005 and burned down two years later.

Investigators said Pushia admitted planning to kill Wallace, the newspaper said.

Pushia became a suspect when an agent for Globe Life Insurance called police March 31 to make a routine check. Pushia was described as Wallace's brother on an insurance policy, and the agent wanted to make sure he was not a suspect in his death.

A search of Pushia's townhouse turned up other insurance policies on Wallace and a day planner. On Feb. 5, the day after Wallace was shot, Pushia had noted "L.W. project completed," the report said.

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