A popular local pastor was arrested Wednesday after admitting to Bossier Parish Sheriff’s detectives he had methamphetamine inside his home.
Andy C. Harris, 56, who has served as pastor of The Church of the Cross (formerly Central Assembly of God) since September 1996, was arrested by Bossier Parish Sheriff’s detectives, and charged with possession of Schedule II controlled dangerous substances (methamphetamine) and possession of drug paraphernalia.
During an investigation, the BPSO learned of possible drug activity at his home.
Harris cooperated with detectives, admitted he was in possession of methamphetamine, and agreed to
consent to search his home.
Deputies found approximately 3.4 grams of suspected meth, along with a smoking device and snorting
It was under Harris’ administration that the 199-foot-tall cross was erected on church property in the Interstate-220/Interstate-20/US Highway 80 triangle. The cross – which in the United States is only shorter than one in Corpus Christi, Texas (210′) and St. Augustine, Florida (208′), was not without controversy.
As pastor of the then Central Assembly of God Church, Harris made an impassioned plea to the Bossier Parish Police Jury in October 2008, after the project was turned down by the Metropolitan Planning Commission, threatening to file a suit in District Court.
At the time, the area wa zoned R-A Residential Agriculture District, and the maximum height allowed under that designation was 45′.
Harris, politically astute and aware of the implications told the BPJ, “The common man on the street is going tto be looking att who’s for the cross and who’s not, and we all understand the ramifications…”
Then state Sen. Robert Adley and state Rep. Henry Burns understood perfectly and asked Police Jury to do whatever they could to gain approval for construction of the cross, and even offered to pursue legislation, if necessary, to help make it happen.
Ultimately, the Police Jury did make an exception, and the cross was built. It was dedicated on Easter Sunday in 2010.
Harris was booked into Bossier Maximum Security Facility with a bond of $5,000.