Three churches burglarized in span of more than a week, deputies say


    Three church's burglarized in span of more than a week, deputies say (Richland County Sheriff's Department)<p>{/p}

    COLUMBIA, SC (WACH) – Deputies are investigating three different church break-ins in a span of more than a week, according to the Richland County Sheriff’s Department.

    Deputies were first called to Mt. Olive Baptist Church in the 1700 block of Blue Ridge Rd. due to a report of a burglary, according to the department.

    One of the staffers at the church said someone kicked the back door open around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 13.

    The person then destroyed the pastor’s study and several other rooms and stole the church’s emergency fund, according to deputies. Other items, such as musical equipment, weren’t stolen however. The estimated cost of the replacement door is around $400, according to deputies.

    Deputies then were called to Haskell Heights Progressive Baptist Church at 1323 Townsend Rd. two days later to reports of a burglary. In this case, someone broke in through the front door of the church. Sometime between Sunday, Feb. 17 around 3 p.m. and Tuesday, Feb. 19.

    Two jugs full of change were stolen from inside, according to the department. The estimated cost of the replacement door is $230, in addition to $200 worth of damage to an office door.

    The next day, on Wednesday, Feb. 20, deputies went to the Genesis Church of God at 1215 Heyward Brockington Rd. due to an alarm. Cash was stolen from the church and the estimated cost of replacing a broken window is $600, according to the department.

    Investigators believe the crimes are connected by the same suspect. Anyone who recognizes anything about the man in the above video is asked to call Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC.

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