Woman pleads guilty in Mechanicsville sex-for-money case

Posted at 3:55 PM, Oct 22, 2013
and last updated 2013-10-22 16:07:48-04

HANOVER COUNTY, Va (WTVR) — A woman accused in an elaborate sex-for-money plot involving the pastor of a Mechanicsville church has pleaded guilty.

Hanover Commonwealth’s Attorney Trip Chalkley said Tonya Farnsworth, 33, pleaded guilty to one count of extortion Tuesday.

Detectives said Farnsworth met Pastor Chris Phillips, 50, online where he agreed to pay her $200 for oral sex.

But investigators said Farnsworth later threatened to expose the sexual encounter unless he shelled out  paid her more money.  In the end detectives said Farnsworth was able to scheme $100,000 from Phillips.

While Farnsworth is charged with extortion, Phillips was charged with embezzling $80,000 from the Mechanicsville Advent Christian Church.

Phillips’ trial is scheduled to being Nov. 25.

Farnsworth faces up to 10 years in prison when she is sentenced on Jan. 17.