Men charged with church burglaries

| September 8, 2011

Two local men have been arrested and charged with burglary as a party to a crime in connection with recent church burglaries in the area. Westly Billion, 17, of Chetek, and Austin Wold, 18, of Barron, appeared in court Tuesday with their attorney to face charges and have their bonds set at the initial court appearances.

Billion allegedly admitted to investigators on Sunday during an in-custody interview at the Barron County Jail that he alone was responsible for burglarizing the Dallas Lutheran Church and the Dallas Assembly of God Church on Wednesday, Aug. 24, according to the criminal complaint.

Billon allegedly described how he entered the churches by prying open a window at the Lutheran Church, and smashing the door handle off the front door at the Assembly of God Church, after unsuccessfully attempting to pry open windows there too. He told investigators he was looking for cash, and admitted to taking a laptop computer and some quarters from a cloth decorative hanging at Dallas Lutheran, and a set of keys at the Assembly of God Church.

Billion said he saw a vehicle drive into the parking lot at the Assembly of God Church while he was burglarizing it, and a man with keys entered the church building and turned on lights, according to the complaint. Investigators noted these details were consistent with a church key holder who responded to the church alarm at 2:57 a.m. on Aug. 24, and the physical evidence including pry marks on the door and windows, and a smashed glass pane.

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Category: Church Security

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