Roswell churches victims of theft

Posted at: 11/05/2013 5:51 PM
By: Lauren Hansard, KOB Eyewitness News 4

Some thieves seem to have a specific target in Roswell: Churches.  Two of them were burglarized over the weekend.  And as KOB Eyewitness News 4 found out, one church really needed what was stolen.

On Saturday St. John’s Catholic Church asked the congregation to give money during six special offerings.

"They took… they took it all," said Deacon Ernesto Martinez.

The money was supposed to help the church with things like remodeling and paying off debt, but Martinez said on Sunday morning it was gone.  Nearly $3,000 was stolen.

“This is money that people donated so that we could survive,” said Martinez.

Martinez said there wasn’t any evidence of forced entry.  He said thieves pried open a locked door inside the church to get the cash.

“My theory is that they probably stayed and hid in the church," said Martinez.

Martinez tells KOB police found ripped up stolen checks about a block away from another church that was broken into.

The Light of the World church was also hit.  Thieves tried to break into their safe but couldn’t get it open.  This is Isaiah Castro’s church.  He said if they had gotten into the safe, it would have been devastating.

"If they would have broken into the safe, I want to say that they would have taken about $5-6,000," Castro said.

Instead they grabbed a laptop.  The church is planning to bring in overnight security.

“Just to think that people have gone that low to where they start breaking in and stealing, what we give here, we give for god," said Castro.

Roswell Police said they are investigating the break-ins, but at this point can’t say whether the two thefts are connected.