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Long IslandCrime

Pair of thieves burglarize Melville church, Suffolk police say

Surveillance video shows two people outside the Presbyterian

Surveillance video shows two people outside the Presbyterian Church of Sweet Hollow in Melville on Monday. Credit: Presbyterian Church of Sweet Hollow

Suffolk police are investigating a burglary at a Melville church, authorities said Thursday.

Along with cash, the burglars stole two blank checks and an external hard drive from an office at Presbyterian Church of Sweet Hollow after they broke in some time between 10 p.m. Sunday and 8 a.m. Monday, authorities said.

The Rev. Meg Flannagan, pastor of the church on Old Country Road, said a surveillance camera recorded two male thieves entering the church at about 6 a.m.

“They spent a full two hours inside the church,” Flannagan said.

Suffolk police didn’t confirm the two people on the recording were the pair who burglarized the church.

The thieves also stole a laptop and other electronics, Flannagan said, adding that they severely tested her patience.

“I am beyond irritated that this happened the week before Holy Week,” the pastor said, “right before Easter.”

Flannagan added that “if anybody is caught and goes to trial for this, I hope they are sentenced to community service. I want these people to come with me when I visit people who are sick. I want them to see the faces of the people they have hurt.”

She said the surveillance video showed the burglars methodically searching through several rooms in the church. They did not damage the church sanctuary or steal valuables there, she said.

“If people come to the church on Sunday, they won’t notice anything,” she said.

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