Weatherford Democrat

Local News

July 11, 2011

Police: need help solving church thefts

PARKER COUNTY — PARKER COUNTY — Parker County Sheriff’s investigators are seeking the public’s help in identifying suspects in several recent thefts at local churches.

In recent months, seven area churches have had air conditioning units destroyed or stolen, Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler said.

The latest incident was reported Wednesday in the 300 block of Bailey Ranch Road in Aledo, when the Faith Presbyterian Church pastor told deputies unknown suspects entered the property, stole the unit from the side of the building and damaged a gated enclosure that was meant to house the unit.

Church members said the system worked during church services July 3, but was missing days afterward, according to the sheriff’s office. Damages total more than $10,000.

Previous incidents include the April 15 theft at Adell Community Fellowship on Adell Court. The sheriff’s office said suspects dismantled two air conditioning units and stole core components.

Two weeks later, suspects stole the air conditioning unit from Soda Springs Baptist Church on Soda Springs Road.

Holy Redeemer Catholic Church members in Aledo reported suspects stole components from five rooftop air conditioning units at the end of May. The suspects caused nearly $60,000 in damages.

Church employees reported an incident occurring May 31, at Real Family Fellowship on Pearson Lane. Suspects stole four units from the building, according to the sheriff’s office.

A church board member of Newsome Mound Community Fellowship on Newsome Mound Road in Springtown, reported the air conditioning unit was stolen from behind the church on June 20.

Hope Lutheran School and Church in East Highway 199 in Springtown also reported units destroyed from thieves who stole condenser coils from three units on July 2.

“These cases are being thoroughly investigated by our Criminal Investigations Division,” Fowler said. “It is an awful crime to desecrate a house of worship or steal from a church. We urge the public to call the sheriff’s office with any information which may assist our investigators in solving these cases.”

Contact Parker County Crime Stoppers at 817-599-5555. Callers may remain anonymous. Crime Stoppers pays up to $1,000 for information that leads to an arrest.

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