The residents of Canton, Illinois, are reeling after learning a local pastor faces criminal charges, accused of attempting to break into an office safe in another church just down the street. "It's crazy. Everybody's doing crazy things these days and it blows my mind," said Trisha Fisher of Canton.
David Utt, 39, pastor of New Hope Community Church in Canton, was taken to Fulton County Jail after being caught breaking into the First Church of Nazarene.
"I feel like it's a little odd, a pastor trying to break into a different church. I feel like that's kind of against the whole religion thing," said Cody Akers of Canton.
Canton Police say officers noticed a suspicious car parked behind the church just after 1am on Monday morning and noticed the back door forced open.
Officers then went into the church and that's when police say they allegedly found Utt breaking into a safe in the office.
"It was shocking. My wife, she couldn't hardly believe it. I mean he broke into the back of the church?" said Wayne Wheeler, a member of First Church of Nazarene.
It's not just those in the community in shock, members of Utt's own congregation are struggling to understand why.
"He just seemed like a really nice guy, always happy.
"It didn't show what he was going through, he must have been going through something," said Denisha Evans, a member of New Hope Community Church.
Many believe Utt was going through something, possibly a financial hardship that must have pushed him over the edge.
"Competition brings out the best and worst of people," said Akers.
Utt faces charges of burglary and criminal damage to a place of worship. He was held on $60,000 bail but bonded out Tuesday.
With news video.
'"I feel like it's a little odd, a pastor trying to break into a different church. I feel like that's kind of against the whole religion thing," said Cody Akers of Canton.'
I think it's odd, too. Pastors usually steal from their own churches.
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