Suspect wanted after donation box stolen from St. Denis Catholic Church in Haverford Township, PA

HAVERFORD TWP., Pa. (WPVI) — Haverford Township police are investigating after a robbery was caught on CCTV at a church Thursday afternoon.

Police say they are looking for a suspicious young man who was seen on video stealing the donation box from St. Denis Catholic Church around 1.45pm.

“Right away, your first reaction is, ‘This is a church,'” Chief John Viola of the Haverford Township Police Department said. “People are actually walking into the church and stealing money that is meant for the poor.”

Father Kevin Gallagher of the Catholic Church of Saint-Denis said that over the past few months someone, or possibly several people, have managed to steal their candles and remove them from all the donation boxes of the church, destroying them in the process.

“Obviously we believe in the truth, so justice must be sought. But at the same time, we obviously realize that this young, this young man has issues that we as a church are ready to help,” Gallagher said.

Police said parish staff saw the crime unfold on real-time surveillance video. Staff members attempted to arrest the suspect, but he fled across the street.

It’s unclear how much money he got away with, but Gallagher said it couldn’t be much.

“The reality is it’s for the poor, so this gentleman wasn’t exempt from that. He’s someone who needed help. We’ve always said if you seek him honestly, we’ll help you honestly. “, added Gallagher.

Following the thefts, the church took security measures like limiting the doors that remain open to the public.

If you have any information, please contact Haverford Township Police.

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