MILLERSVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A barefoot bandit breaks into a Millersville church and then makes himself at home sleeping on the couch before stealing cash, food, and even the pastor’s truck.
The burglar entered through an unlocked door into the church basement where they also have daycare.
And Unlike most burglars, this thief was in no rush to leave, making himself at home, even took off his shoes.
Bethel Baptist Church Associate Pastor Brandon Carder tells news 2, “he really seemed quite comfortable. It’s ironic because we are a church and our doors are open to anyone. We would have said to him, here let me feed you, and we’ll find you a place to sleep tonight.”
Carder says he was overseeing a new members class Saturday morning, a day they are not typically in the church. He says he got there around 8:30 am for the 9-12 get-together. He said he had a strange feeling.
Pastor Carder says, “I looked in my office, and I was looking for my keys, and I saw they were missing along with my rain jacket. And my first reaction was, I thought I was getting pranked.”
News 2 has viewed church surveillance videos from Friday night into Saturday morning.
The video shows a young bandit rummaging through the church daycare in the basement.
The young thief has a flashlight, he is barefoot, and he is casually looking on shelves and making himself at home by stealing food, drinks, even watching a 101 Dalmations video.
Pastor Carder says, “more than anything, I felt sympathy for him. He looked like a young man lost with no direction in the world.”
Police show News 2 video of the bandit sleeping on the couch, then waking up, putting on his pants, his shoes, and then leaving the downstairs daycare area.
Carder says, “now might be a turning point in his life. where he might have hit rock bottom and that’s what I saw from the video, and that is when God is eager to pick people up.”
Brandon Carder tells News 2, before leaving, the thief goes to the pastor’s office and steals $50 dollars in cash, money that was allocated for human trafficking victims. He took a gift card that a parishioner gave to the pastor. And according to the pastor, the thief stole his keys and then fled with his pick up truck, a 2008 Chevy Silverado.
If Pastor Carder could talk to the victim he would say this, “I don’t know who you are, but God knows who you are and he loves you regardless of what you have done. I have forgiven you and I know God has forgiven you as well and I know he is ready to change your life.”
If you recognize the man or the pastor’s truck give Millersville Police a call.
Investigators say a man matching the burglar’s description was spotted Friday night walking down the road a few miles from the church
The thief is described as white, about 5’9 in his early 20’s.