Matthew Long, 34, of Lewes was charged Feb. 12 f after police say he unlawfully entered St. Edmonds Catholic Church in Rehoboth and removed a safe containing more than $1,500 in cash.
On Feb. 3, Rehoboth Beach Police were called to 409 King Charles Ave., St. Edmonds Catholic Church, for a report of a burglary. The investigation revealed the church had been forcibly entered, causing damage to two doors, and that a safe containing money valued at more than $1,500 had been removed. Investigators used surveillance footage to identify the suspect as Long, a former church employee.
Officers determined Long was operating a Ford F-150 pickup truck, which he backed onto the church yard, striking a marble bench, damaging both in the process. Investigators further determined Long used the same truck to remove the safe from the church.
Long was later stopped while operating the same truck, which had damage that connected the truck to the crime scene.
Long was charged with third-degree burglary, wearing a disguise while committing a felony, burglary tool possession, and theft greater than $1,500, all felonies. He was also charged with criminal mischief and breach of release, both misdemeanors and with driving while suspended or revoked, reckless driving, improper backing, knowingly operating a motor vehicle on private property without owner consent, and driving a motor vehicle on a sidewalk, all traffic violations.
Long was committed to Sussex Correctional Institution in lieu of $9,125 secured bail.