Denton police seek burglar in string of church break-ins

| April 13, 2010

Police are looking for a burglar caught on tape breaking into several area churches to steal cash and electronic equipment.

Denton police spokesman Ryan Grelle said the man hit a Denton church twice, as well as churches in Farmers Branch and Midlothian. He's also suspected in church break-ins in Mansfield and Southlake.

"Robbing a church is like taking the express train to hell in my book," said Joe Ketchum, facilities manager for Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Denton.

The thief first struck the church in August, Ketchum said, stealing a cash box containing $80 in tuition money for the church's Sunday School class. The church was hit again in January, though Ketchum said he doesn't know what, if anything, was stolen that time.

Maybe it's a disguise or a fashion statement, but the surveillance camera video shows the man wearing a fedora hat during the break-ins.

Grelle and Ketchum had differing opinions on the significance of the fashion accessory.

"Maybe it's his favorite," Grelle said.

Ketchum said he thought the burglar wore it to help conceal his identity.

"Probably to hide the color of his hair," he said.

Authorities are asking anyone with information about the crimes to call local police. Denton police can be reached at 940-349-8181.

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Category: Church Security

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