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Last updated on Wednesday, January 16, 2013
(UNDATED) - Lawrence County Detectives arrested 25-year-old Zachary Stevens for breaking into area churches.
Stevens, of 525 S Street, is charged with 7 counts of church burglary, 7 counts of burglary, 6 counts of theft, 6 counts of criminal mischief, and possession of marijuana and possession of a schedule III controlled substance and maintaining a common nuisance. Other charges could be pending.
Reports of the break-ins began pouring into the Sheriff's Department Sunday morning as people started arriving to begin church services.
Sheriff Sam Craig says the burglaries occurred on the west side of the county from the northern part all the way to Williams.
The churches hit were Fayetteville Baptist Church on Ind. 158, Calvary Baptist Church on Sieboldt Quarry Road, Hilltop Pentecostal Church, Popcorn Christian Church, in Springville, Spice Valley Church of Christ, near Williams and First Baptist Church on Ridge Road.
Detective Tyler Phillips is investigating the break-ins, because of the number of reports, an additional detective was called in to work Sunday morning to provide assistance.
Stevens is accused of stealing musical instruments, equipment, computers, cash and other items. Craig says some of the property was recovered and some was sold.
Craig says Stevens was found living in a trailer on property in Lawrence County that is owned by relatives. Following up on the information they had gathered, police went to that property Tuesday.
Sheriff Craig says the investigation is continuing and other arrests are possible. He asks that anyone with information is asked to call the Lawrence County Sheriff's Department.
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