Florida Preacher Zachery Tims Found Dead in Times Square's W Hotel

By Ben Fractenberg on August 15, 2011 7:35pm 

Reverend Zachery Tims, 42, was found dead in the Times Square W hotel on August 12th, 2011.
Reverend Zachery Tims, 42, was found dead in the Times Square W hotel on August 12th, 2011.
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Twitter/ztims

MIDTOWN — No foul play was suspected in the death of a leader of a Florida megachurch found dead in Times Square's W hotel Friday night, the New York Observer reported.

Zachery “Fresh Prince” Tims, 42, of the New Destiny Christian Center in Orlando, was in town for a meeting and was due to fly to Texas last Thursday. Instead, police found him the next day, a white powdery substance, believed to be narcotics, near his body, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

Tims — who gained his nickname for bearing a striking resemblance to movie star Will Smith, who starred in the TV show the Fresh Prince of Bel Air — formed his church in 1996. The church grew into a congregation with more than 8,000 members. He had talked about overcoming drug addiction as a teenager, according to the church's website.

Tims also reportedly admitted to having an affair in 2007 and divorced his wife of 15 years, Riva.

The church tweeted it was having a meeting Monday night for members to address "several rumors and speculations" about Tims.

His friends and fans took to Twitter to express their sadness and disbelief about his death.

"I join many others in being saddened by the news of the death of Rev. Zachery Tims of Florida." tweeted Al Sharpton Monday.

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