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Long IslandCrime

LI man charged with church, home burglaries, police say

A 911 call reporting a trespasser ended with the arrest of a homeless man who Suffolk County police said not only burglarized the Patchogue home where he was found, but also donation boxes at a nearby Catholic church.

Bruce Roman, 28, was charged with two counts of third-degree burglary following the arrest at the home on Wilmarth Avenue at 11:57 p.m. Wednesday. He was held overnight at the Fifth Precinct and was arraigned Thursday in First District Court in Central Islip. He was held on bail of $20,000 cash or $10.000 bond.

He is represented by Suffolk's Legal Aid, which does not comment on cases.

Police said Fifth Precinct officers responding to the trespassing complaint call found Roman "squatting in a boat on the property" and recovered tools and a BB gun stolen from the resident's garage. Officers said that during questioning Roman admitted to also burglarizing Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Roman Catholic Church, located on North Ocean Avenue in North Patchogue.

Police said Roman entered Our Lady of Mt. Carmel on July 16 and broke into eight donation boxes, stealing about $100. That incident had been the subject of a Crime Stoppers alert.

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