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3 Arrested In Series Of Church Robberies

SHELBY TWP. (WWJ) - Police in Shelby Township have three young men in custody who they believe pulled off a string of break-ins and thefts in the area -- including at three churches.

The three, identified as 20-year-old Jesse Brusseau-Meray of Riley Township; 19-year-old Eric Eby of Shelby Township; and a 17-year-old from Sterling Heights, were arrested following a failed gas station robbery early Monday morning.

After the arrests, police searched homes in Sterling Heights and Shelby Township -- as well as a storage unit.

The trio is suspected in break-ins at churches in Utica, Clinton Township and Shelby Township. Police said they're also liked to 12 business break-ins -- one of them a police supply story.

Among those churches targeted was St. Therese of Liseux, which was robbed of various items, along with an estimated $40,000 in donations, on Easter Sunday.

"I'm relieved that they're caught, for the safety of everyone in the neighborhood," said the church's pastor, Fr. Larry Zurawski.

Police recovered $6,000 in cash, a number of checks and collection envelopes.

Police say the suspects spent the stolen money on "toys." One of them allegedly paid for flying lessons.

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