Chief James McIntyre
47 Central Street
Stoneham, MA 02180-2044
For Immediate Release
Monday, March 6, 2017
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Stoneham Police Seeking Church Collection Box Thief
Same Man Believed to be Behind Cash Thefts in October and February
STONEHAM — Police Chief James McIntyre report that the Stoneham Police Department is seeking the public’s assistance in identifying and apprehending a man believed to have stolen cash from St. Patrick’s Parish on two occasions.
Stoneham Police responded to the Roman Catholic church on Feb. 20 to take a report of a larceny. Upon arrival, a police officer was met by the church janitor who reported that earlier that day, at about 11:40 a.m., he witnessed a man use a large screwdriver to pry open the locked money box and remove cash from the candle lighting prayer stand. The janitor yelled at the man, followed him outside, and took multiple photos of the alleged thief. The suspect fled, and the janitor called the police.
The suspect took a quantity of cash and fled, possibly on a burgundy Diamondback brand cruiser bicycle.
A similar incident occurred at the same church in October, and police believe the same suspect may have tried his luck twice.
The suspect is described as a white man in his late 50s or 60s, bald with gray hair on the sides. He has a stocky build and was wearing a green “work” coat, red hooded sweatshirt, and blue jeans.
Chief McIntyre applauded the efforts of the church janitor for spotting a crime in progress, taking photos, and alerting police.
“The witness in this case acted smartly, and his actions are commendable,” Chief McIntyre said. “We never advise citizens to attempt to apprehend a potentially dangerous suspect. Now we have clear photos, and we hope the public recognizes this individual.”
If anyone has any information about this case or recognizes the suspect pictured, they are urged to call the Stoneham Police Department at 781-438-1215.