Churches being targeted in recent burglaries in Jefferson County

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office is asking for the public's assistance for information leading to those responsible regarding recent burglaries at churches in the county.

The Jefferson County Sheriffâ??s Office is asking for the publicâ??s assistance concerning a string of burglaries targeting churches.

The churches that have been targeted are the Faith United Church in Libertyville; the Calvary Baptist Church in Batavia; the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Fairfield and the Jubilee Kingdom Gathering Church in Fairfield.

The burglaries started happening in early July and have also taken place in neighboring Wapello, Keokuk and Henry Counties.

Law enforcement says that the burglaries could be connected.

â??Some of the cases, the churches have been left unattended and unlocked; in others they did force entry. We do think that they are all connected and everyone of the burglaries, that I am aware of, they have taken electronics and audio visual equipment,â?? said Lt. Jerry Marcellus with the Jefferson County Sheriffâ??s Office.

The sheriffâ??s office is offering some advice for other places of worship throughout southeast Iowa.

â??Make sure the doors are locked when the last person leaves, security lights, just simple steps like that. Maybe storing the offering money somewhere other then in the church building, things like that,â?? Lt. Marcellus said.

Lt. Marcellus says that if you notice any unusual vehicle at a church when services are not being held, get the license plate and call law enforcement.