SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) - When police responded to break-ins at area churches they called the thieves sophisticated. Now we are learning they may have been very young men.
Wednesday Logan Gerring, 17, Eric Eby, 19, and Jesse Brusseau-Meray, 20 faced a magistrate in Shelby Township's District court. They were charged in connection with a break in at a Shelby township Speedway gas station on 23 mile early Monday morning.
Police say after questioning the Macomb County young men they got search warrants for a Shelby Township storage unit and the homes of two of their parents. During those searches they found evidence they had been hoping to find.
They found donation envelopes from three Macomb County Churches.
"I have a 50 gallon bag of envelopes to go through. We have a lot of work to do," said Lt. Tom Kohl, of the Shelby Township Police Department.
This appears to be key evidence because thieves hit St. Therese of Liseuix Catholic Church in Shelby Township and Saint Luke's Lutheran Church in Clinton Township on the day after Easter. Thieves sawed with a grinder into their safes and stole holiday donations.
This came after a similar incident at Saint Lawrence Catholic Church in Utica.
Police learned that one of the teens they arrested went to St. Lawrence. Gerring helped put on a PowerPoint presentation during Sunday announcements at service. Each time the high school student helped he was paid $5.
Shelby Township Police say they are going through their evidence, the evidence of other departments, and working with the prosecutor to charge them with the church incidents and possibly another dozen burglaries. So far they have only been charged with the gas station incident.
Police say they recovered about $6,000, only a fraction of what was taken. They say parents told them one of the young men had been spending a lot of money recently, even taking flying lessons.