The First Baptist Church of Hammond said Tuesday that pastor Jack Schaap committed "a sin that has caused him to forfeit his right to be our pastor." Church representatives said they are cooperating with police.
Lake County Sheriff John Buncich told The Times of Munster that his department began a criminal investigation Tuesday after talking with senior church representatives. He said the investigation involves the church and its Hyles Anderson College.
The church elected the 54-year-old Schaap its pastor in February 2001 after the late Rev. Jack Hyles died of a heart attack. Hyles' daughter married Schaap.
The church said it moved into a new 7,500-seat auditorium under Schaap, a native of Holland, Mich.