The Rev. Lawrence Pounds, of the Family Worship Church in Smithfield, is preaching in front of the pulpit these days. Three weeks ago, thieves broke into his church in Smithfield and stole the microphones and sound system.
His church is one of many churches around Smithfield that have been broken into since August. However, deputies say the spree should be over.
Three Smithfield men, 45-year-old Phillip Carraway, 40-year-old Stevie Williams and 39-year-old Richard Narron, were arrested for the crimes.
Johnston County Sheriff Steve Bizzell said he had about a dozen deputies working on the case.
"I got a tip the other day from a citizen, and as a result of that, we investigated further and we were able to make an arrest late yesterday (Monday) afternoon," he said.
The arrests are good news for the congregations.
"We have forgiven people for things like this, but what they did, they need to make a reconcillation and restitution," Pounds said. "They are still in our prayers, but it is disturbing for our congregation and all of us."
Authorities said the stolen items may have been sold to obtain money for drugs.
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