UPDATE: McMinn County church vandalized, suspect arrested - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: McMinn County church vandalized, suspect arrested

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MCMINN COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -- A man wanted by multiple police agencies for theft charges is behind bars in Polk County Monday.

Sheriff Joe Guy says Jeremy Gamble broke into Double Springs Baptist Church in McMinn County and tried to kick his way into an equipment room.

The door is still cracked and you can imagine the shock when the pastor noticed a broken door window before Sunday service.

"We sealed off the building and immediately went looking through to see if anything was missing or damaged," says Shane Arnold.

Investigators say the day before the break-in, Gamble borrowed a pair of pliers from a neighbor and used those same pliers to smash the church window.

Call it a miracle, but the pastor says the church lost nothing. The media equipment down the hall is still intact.

Police believe Gamble was in and out in no time.  "Maybe someone drove by and he got scared and ran out the door," Arnold says.

This isn't the first time Gamble has been on law enforcement's radar.  Sheriff Guy says Gamble is also wanted in both Polk and Fanning counties for stealing cars.

"He is definitely a popular guy," says Sheriff Guy.

Arnold says the building is only three years old and much of the equipment inside is fairly new.

"Sometime the need to get something overrules common sense," says Arnold. Whether it's a church or business or something else, people just aren't discriminating."

Sheriff Joe Guy says, "We don't like to see one of our local congregations broken into and that is morally reprehensible so we work to bring solutions to solving those."

Gamble was booked into the Polk County jail Sunday, shortly after 1:30 p.m. on charges of theft under $10,000, driving under the influence and a parole violation.

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