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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.

Woman sentenced for burglarizing church

Melissa D. Allen
Melissa D. Allen
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Wednesday, January 11, 2017 08:27 am
A woman — who with her husband — burglarized a church last August received her sentence Wednesday in Allen Superior Court. Melissa D. Allen, 37, received a two-year prison sentence for burglary, a Level 5 felony. Allen pleaded guilty Dec. 19 to the one count.

Fort Wayne Police responded to a burglary in progress at 12:11 p.m. Aug. 5 at Bible Baptist Church, 4720 Wayne Trace, where a man was seen by church staff climbing out of an office window with an air conditioner. Allen and her husband, James I. Allen Jr., 39, were taken into police custody shortly afterward. A staff member called the minister to tell him of the burglary and then searched every room and took pictures. In all, four air conditioners and a laptop were missing from the church.

Police cleared the church and found a bathroom window unlocked. The minister, who had arrived at the church, said the suspect came into the church two days before and asked to use the restroom. He said window had been locked.

James Allen pleaded guilty to burglary of the church on Tuesday and he is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 7. According to terms of his plea agreement, he would receive a four-year prison term, plus additional time for violating terms of his probation in another case.



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