Salem man accused of breaking into church, stealing tablets

Salem man accused of breaking into church, stealing tablets

BRIDGEPORT, W.Va (WDTV) – A Salem man has been charged after officers said he broke into a Salem church and stole 10-12 tablets from the youth room.

Officers received a call from the pastor at Salem Baptist Church on February 7 about someone who broke into the church on February 2 at approximately 3:00 a.m., according to a criminal complaint.

The report says a man, later identified as James F. Lattea, 47, was caught on video surveillance forcing a side entrance open by grabbing the doors and pulling them multiple times despite being locked.

Officers said Lattea made entry into the church and walked around the church until he found the youth room on the bottom floor of the church.

Video surveillance shows Lattea go down the stairs and enter the youth room at approximately 3:30 a.m. and exit the room at approximately 3:36 a.m. carrying a small tote with “what appears to be some type of electronic devices,” according to court documents.

There is little coverage on the interior of the church, according to officers, but cameras pick Lattea up again at the rear entrance of the church.

The report says Lattea is once again caught on camera, but he notices the camera and puts his hood up before the footage cuts off.

Officers were then told that approximately 10-12 tablets were stolen from the youth room, all of which had been donated by the Doddridge County Board of Education.

The approximate value of the stolen tablets is $1,200.

Lattea has been charged with grand larceny and is being held at North Central Regional Jail on a $5,000 bond.

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