Man Caught On Camera Stealing From Local Church

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By: Kara Duffy
October 21, 2013

Thomasville, GA - Thomasville police have arrested a man suspected of stealing copper from several businesses and churches.

Investigators say Demetrius Walden was caught on camera at Thomasville's First United Methodist Church stealing copper earlier this month.

He's also accused of stealing copper from several other churches and medical centers. Police alerted scrap yards in the area to be on the lookout for anyone trying to sell the metal. That's when they received a call from a recycling yard in Tallahassee.

Detective Louis Schofill, Thomasville Police Dept.:"We reviewed his history of selling copper over the last few weeks down there and found out that the day after all of our thefts he was turning in copper down there at the recycling plant."

Walden faces several charges, including felony vandalism of a place of worship, and seven counts of theft by taking.

By: Kara Duffy
October 7, 2013

Thomasville, GA - Thomasville Police need the public's help in finding a man who was caught on camera stealing from Thomasville's First United Methodist Church along Broad Street.

They say it happened around 4:30 a.m. on Wednesday.

"He removed the gutter, which was a copper gutter, and as you know copper is a big valued scrap metal at this time," said Lt. Wade Glover with the Thomasville Police Department's Investigation Unit.

Those who work at the church say they were shocked and saddened that someone would steal from them.

"We do a lot for this community and to have someone then go and divert the resources that we use administering to other people, to having to now replace these down spouts is shameful," said Floyd White, the church's administrator.

Investigators say the man left something behind at the scene before taking off with the gutters.

"He had actually defecated on the property and left it there."

"That's what originally made us check the tape; you know was finding that and then to see evidence of him stealing our copper down spouts was unbelievable," White added.

Investigators say they received several more reports of copper being stolen from businesses in the area just over the weekend.

They say they aren't sure at this time if the incidents are connected, but they are looking into the possibility of it.

"If it only happened in one area, we could identify the suspect and make an arrest but it's city wide, they're hitting our doctors offices as well, and also our churches," Lt. Glover said.

Anyone with information on this crime should is asked to call the Thomasville Police Department at (229) 227-3249.

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