Lexington Police looking for suspect in church art theft

| June 17, 2010

Lexington police are looking for a woman suspected of stealing two paintings from Grace Chapel.

According to security footage and the police, the suspect entered the church during services at 11:30 Sunday morning. Video posted on YouTube shows the suspect leaving the church, sipping a beverage and stopping to look at something on the wall, with two paintings tucked under her right arm.

The paintings were part of a small gallery of artwork by local artists, said Jared Willey, Grace Chapel's communication director. He said the stolen paintings were by two different artists.

Willey said a church employee noticed the empty spaces on the walls late Sunday or early Monday. After checking with the gallery coordinator and the artist, the church determined that the paintings were not sold or legitimately removed.

"It's really a surprising thing to us," Willey said. "Who would expect someone to come into a church and steal artwork off the walls?"

The suspect is a white female between 35 and 40 years of age, about 5'3", with light brown hair and a large build, said police. She wore a blue sweater, clam digger pants and sandals, and carried a large Coach bag.

Lexington Police Captain Joseph O'Leary said the department was actively pursuing a couple of leads on the case.

"We obviously hope the public can help us out, help to identify this woman and help to recover the artwork for the church," O'Leary said. He said it wasn't clear what motive the suspect might have for taking the artwork.

Those with information are asked to call the Lexington police department at (781) 862-1212, ext. 310.




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Category: Church Security

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