VIDEO: Church thief caught on camera

First published in Local News
Last updated

FOOTAGE of a prolific church thief has been released as part of a renewed attempt to find him.

The CCTV footage, at St Andrew's Church, Abberton, features a man trying to smash open a safe with a hammer and stealing religious artefacts.

More than a dozen churches in north Essex were raided in February and March.

During the theft he takes a statuette of the Christ Child with the Virgin Mary and a bronze ship’s bell with the letters SMI engraved on it.

Similar thefts have been carried out over the past month at churches in Stow Maries, Wickham Bishops, Goldhanger, Purleigh and Stock.

Other thefts were also reported in Lexden, Shrub End, Stanway and Copford.

Extra police patrols are being carried out around areas with small rural churches and members of the public are urged to call 999 if they see any suspicious activity around churches.

Anyone who can identify the man in the CCTV footage should contact the investigating officer PC Shaun Hammond on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Also call in if you have any information about any church items being offered for sale in suspicious circumstances.

Comments (5)

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4:55pm Thu 27 Mar 14

DailyGazette says...

I love that church, stop there often for some time out.
Hope he is caught and forgiven.
I love that church, stop there often for some time out. Hope he is caught and forgiven. DailyGazette
  • Score: -9

5:12pm Thu 27 Mar 14

meddler1 says...

DailyGazette wrote:
I love that church, stop there often for some time out.
Hope he is caught and forgiven.
Very Christian of you, but I would far rather he is caught and locked away for a long time!
[quote][p][bold]DailyGazette[/bold] wrote: I love that church, stop there often for some time out. Hope he is caught and forgiven.[/p][/quote]Very Christian of you, but I would far rather he is caught and locked away for a long time! meddler1
  • Score: 12

5:54pm Thu 27 Mar 14

Route88 says...

DailyGazette wrote:
I love that church, stop there often for some time out.
Hope he is caught and forgiven.
Creatures like him are the cause of churches being locked so you may find yourself unable to visit in the future.
[quote][p][bold]DailyGazette[/bold] wrote: I love that church, stop there often for some time out. Hope he is caught and forgiven.[/p][/quote]Creatures like him are the cause of churches being locked so you may find yourself unable to visit in the future. Route88
  • Score: 7

6:58pm Thu 27 Mar 14

carnmountyouknowitmakessense says...

Needs some better locks, why bother with CCTV, if it's going to be an open house ???
Needs some better locks, why bother with CCTV, if it's going to be an open house ??? carnmountyouknowitmakessense
  • Score: -3

1:54am Fri 28 Mar 14

FamouSam says...

It's God's wish that he should do this. How dare you resent it. To Hell with you all. If God wants him to nick stuff who are you to object?

If you believe in God at least be consistent.
It's God's wish that he should do this. How dare you resent it. To Hell with you all. If God wants him to nick stuff who are you to object? If you believe in God at least be consistent. FamouSam
  • Score: 1

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