Thursday, March 11, 2010

Police Nab Church Parking Lot Burglar

Thursday, March 11, 2010
Last modified Wednesday, March 10, 2010 10:19 AM CST

Police nab church parking lot burglar through witness


FOREST — Separate incidents of vehicle burglaries in area church parking lots set off an investigation recently that resulted in one arrest last week.

Argelis Pena, 17, of East Third St., Forest, was charged as an adult with felony auto burglary.

Forest Police Chief Robert Roncali praised the work of his officers in keeping watch over church parking lots and said the department intends to keep up their efforts.

“These churches will be closely watched,” Roncali said. “Like anywhere else, we will not tolerate these kinds, or any other, of criminal activity.”

Capt. Will Jones said that last Wednesday, police received a report of a truck being broken into at Forest Baptist Church by breaking one of the vehicle’s windows and personal property was taken.

“A witness reported seeing the suspect and gave an accurate description leading us to the right person. We executed a search warrant on his residence and recovered the stolen property. The suspect gave us a statement admitting to the burglary,” Jones said.

This is the second incident of its kind in that church parking lot and Jones said the other incident remains under investigation.

“We encourage all of our residents to be careful when walking through any parking lot, during the daytime or at night,” Roncali said. “Be observant of your surroundings and report anything that is suspicious.”

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