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Burglars Break Into Church, Steal $3K In Equipment

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COLUMBIA HEIGHTS, Minn. (WCCO) – Just days before Easter, a church in Columbia Heights was the target of a burglary, according to a criminal complaint filed in Anoka County.

Five accused burglars allegedly threw a gumball machine through a window at the First Lutheran Church on the 1500 block of 40th Avenue Northeast early last Wednesday morning.

The five suspects are accused of then stealing more than $3,000 worth of electronics and musical equipment.

The suspects named in the complaint are 20-year-old Jacob Lee Legro, 18-year-old Tyler James Palodichuk Swenson, 20-year-old Stephen Roneal Devon Calmese, and 19-year-old Kevin Kraig Hemness. The fifth suspect was not named in the complaint.

According to the complaint, the items stolen from the church included a television, two computers, a monitor, a guitar and amplifier. The amount of stolen property totaled more than $3,000, the complaint says.

Legro allegedly drove the vehicle to the spot where the other three named suspects had hidden the stolen items.

They then allegedly tried to pawn some of the stolen items at Pawn America, according to the complaint.

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