TRAVERSE CITY — Prosecutors on Tuesday dismissed eight felony charges against a former pastor accused of drugging and assaulting several men.
Christopher Cox, 41, pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct in a plea deal that dismissed a laundry list of charges — including three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, extortion, delivering/manufacturing meth and three counts for possession of child porn.
A third-degree CSC carries a maximum prison sentence of 15 years and requires registration as a sex offender. Initial charges could have netted a life sentence.
Cox was arrested March 30 in Muskegon.
He formerly served as a Long Lake Church pastor and Traverse City Christian School official.
The plea deal stipulates that prosecutors will “not proceed with any other charges for all known victims.”
Tuesday marked a deadline set for the prosecution and defense to wrap a late discovery issue regarding electronics seized upon the former pastor’s arrest.
The notice to plea did not appear in Cox’s 13th Circuit Court record until Tuesday.
Cox will appear in court for sentencing on Nov. 8.