An Austintown deacon has pled not guilty to stealing over $39,000 from funds for the needy in court Tuesday.

Fifty-one-year-old Gregory Pflug pled not guilty to a charge of grand theft in the Mahoning County Court of Common Pleas.

The charge stems from an incident in which police say Pflug, who is a deacon at the Tabernacle Evangelical Church in Austintown allegedly made ATM withdrawals of over $39,000 worth of money that was supposed to be for needy church members.

Police say Pflug told a senior member of the church that he had no way of repaying the money.

Pflug is currently free on a $4,000 bond and is scheduled back in court on August 28 at 8:30 a.m.