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Deacon, ex-business manager accused of using $58,000 in Edmond church funds for own gain

Bill Dwight Coyle, 62, of Edmond, OK, was charged with eight felony counts. According to court documents, a co-worker says Coyle, the former business manager at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, resented a former church pastor and thought he should have been paid more for his work.
by Tim Willert Modified: December 18, 2012 at 9:27 pm •  Published: December 18, 2012

Hearn said she would speak with Coyle about the charges he was “accruing,” and he would say “he would work something out,” a detective wrote in the affidavit. She kept a tab of Coyle's expenditures and paid the credit card bills, the detective said.

Coyle, the accountant told investigators, would sometimes give her money that would be deposited into the church bank account.

Hearn said Coyle “was very negative toward (the Rev. John) Metzinger's leadership and did not agree with his business or ministry decisions,” the detective reported.

Metzinger, a longtime pastor at St. John's, was appointed pastor of Our Lady's Cathedral in Oklahoma City in April. He was succeeded at St. John's by the Rev. Ray Ackerman.

The co-worker said Coyle became “more and more negative toward Metzinger and the church because he felt like he should have received more compensation for his work on a church lawsuit that was settled in 2010,” the detective wrote in the affidavit.

Metzinger told investigators Coyle worked on a lawsuit involving the church and an architect, and the former pastor said he gave Coyle a $1,000 bonus for his efforts, according to the affidavit.

The bonus, Hearn told investigators, “made Coyle angry because he thought he deserved more.”

Coyle then stopped attempting to pay any money back to the church, the accountant told police.

She told investigators she decided to report the alleged abuse when she learned a parish assessment was being done.

She wrote a letter to Metzinger detailing her concerns about how Coyle had been using the credit cards and cellphones for purposes other than church business, the affidavit states.

Hearn, an accountant with the church since 2001, is not suspected of a crime, Edmond police spokeswoman Jenny Monroe said.

Chancellor Tish Eason, a spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, which oversees St. John the Baptist, declined to comment Tuesday, other than to say the archdiocese has cooperated with police in their investigation.

Metzinger could not be reached for comment.

The investigation began in July as an embezzlement complaint when an audit revealed more than $109,000 missing from the church at 924 S Littler Ave., according to an Edmond police report. Coyle was business manager of the church at the time, the report states. The money was thought to have gone missing between Jan. 1, 2004, and Feb. 1, 2012. has disabled the comments for this article.