Church Vandals Interrupted But Not Before Damage Is Done

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(Memphis) Burglars trying to strip A/C units and steal electrical wiring from a north Memphis Church were interrupted early Wednesday morning.

A neighbor concerned about a suspicious car at Chelsea and Peres called police.

Officers say when they got there they heard banging noises coming from Chelsea Avenue Church of Christ and found 19-year-old Toby Parson and 24-year-old Eddie Young ripping electrical wires off the church.

"They probably would have been gone in thirty minutes or so because they had it all torn down and they were just ready to yank it out," said electrician Dale Catterton.

Police estimate the damage at around $5,000.

Church members say this is the third time they have been targeted by vandals in recent years.

They are hoping to have the damage repaired before services Sunday.

Parson and Young have been charged with vandalism and destroying or interfering with a utility line.