BAY, AR (KAIT) - Like many churches throughout Region 8, Alsup Baptist Church on County Road 625 in Bay has a food pantry.
If someone is hungry, they will feed them. There really is no need for someone to break into the church and steal food.
But the Craighead County Sheriff's Office says that's exactly what someone did.
According to the incident report, Deputy Shannon Simino's mother discovered the break-in at the church on Wednesday evening. She called her son who then contacted Sergeant Jason Allen of the sheriff's office.
According to Allen, several different areas of the church had damage to the doors and windows. At the back of the church he found a broken window which appeared to be the point of entry. In his report he noted fingerprints on the window's metal frame.
Once inside the church the suspects pried open a padlock to the food pantry, ransacked the shelves, then left through another window.
Associate Pastor James Morgan says he and his fellow congregation were horrified with what they discovered as they were heading into service Wednesday night.
"We came to church last night and found this where somebody had totally just destroyed everything," Morgan said sadly. "And it's a terrible thing because this is God's house. I think God's house is sacred."
Someone didn't think so.
On the outside of the window Allen found fresh footprints in the mud and a trail of canned goods leading to the parking lot in front of the church, the report said.
He also reported finding a red tote belonging to the church which had one can of food inside. Morgan says if they had simply come to them for help, they would have given them the food.
"We definitely would have given them any amount of food they needed," Morgan stated. "They didn't have to steal it. All they had to do was contact us and somebody would have gotten them the food they needed."
Not only do they have damage to repair, Morgan says their food stock is now drastically down from where it needs to be.
"We hope to get our food supply built back up. It didn't drain us, but it put us low from where we need to be for the month."
Morgan says their food pantry is used to help feed those in need every week.
If you have any information on this crime, call the sheriff's office at (870) 933-4551.