Shelby thief strikes under ‘watchful eyes of Jesus’

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

A young man pulled a gold SUV into the parking lot at St. George Chaldean Church in Shelby Township early Friday then casually stepped out.

But authorities say he wasn’t there for a late-night worship service or even anything spiritual. That visitor was caught on camera stealing from the church on the 45000 block of Dequindre, and police now are seeking tips leading to his arrest.

Investigators released surveillance footage Tuesday that showed the suspect entering a prayer area festooned with floral decorations at about 1:45 a.m. Aug. 5.

Clad in a T-shirt, red shorts and flip-flops, he is filmed struggling to pry open a safe with a metal object.

“As you can see from the time stamp, he spent a significant amount of time under the watchful eyes of Jesus, the Holy Mother and St. George’s surveillance camera,” township police said in a statement Tuesday.

After several minutes, the thief succeeds and is seen gathering piles of money, which he then carries back to the SUV. By 1:51 a.m., the man drives away.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Shelby Township police at (586) 731-2121 or on their Facebook page.