Deputies may be closer to identifying thieves targeting churches

Posted at 5:22 PM, Dec 24, 2013
and last updated 2013-12-24 17:22:47-05

Deputies continue to investigate thefts at a total of six churches in the last month- Three in Isle of Wight County and three in nearby Surry County.

Thieves either stole heating and air conditioning units or copper drain pipe.

The Surry County Sheriff now says they may have collected some physical evidence that could help lead to an arrest.

While a couple churches already replaced their units as of last week, the thought of coming up with around $15,000 to replace six copper drain pipes seemed a bit out of reach for church officials at Historic St. Luke's.

"It's frustrating, it's disheartening," said the churches Executive Director, Rachael Buchanan.

Although Buchanan didn't know exactly how much money they've raised just yet, that goal doesn't seem as farfetched. And, it's all thanks to the support from the community.

"I'd feel real happy just knowing that I helped out," said Ashlyn Wiggs.

Ashlyn and her family visited the historic site Christmas Eve afternoon.

After hearing about the theft from NewsChannel 3, she didn't even give it a thought before deciding to donate the $10 she had in her pocket.

"She's got a good heart," her father said. “We taught her well.”

St. Luke’s is an active church. Money to keep the site up and running mainly come from donations, tour and admission fees and special events like wedding.

If you'd like to donate to help make repairs go to: