FORDHAM HEIGHTS, The Bronx (WABC) -- A church in the Bronx was forced to suspend its food pantry program that has been supporting hundreds of people during the coronavirus pandemic after the building was burglarized.
At least three people broke into the Creston Avenue Baptist Church in the Fordham Heights section of the Bronx at about 1:30 in the morning Tuesday.
"They came in thru the back, there is an alley in the back, and they came in through there, and once inside they took their time and made their way through," church treasurer Emeka Oseafiana said.
During the next five and half hours they allegedly ransacked, vandalized, and stole food from the church -- one person even defecated just feet from the sanctuary.
"That was heartbreaking to see," Oseafiana said. "We just continue to pray for those individuals."
He says they unsuccessfully tried to bust open a safe, but they did manage to make off with computers meant for an after school program as well as brand new audio equipment.
The crime forced the church to temporarily suspend its food pantry program.
"On Wednesday we had to close and that's 200 people who couldn't get food and they'll have to wait until Friday," Oseafiana said.
A program that has seen a four-fold increase in need since the outbreak of the coronavirus.
"Monday, Wednesday, and Friday that line is around the block and we're still serving the community," Oseafiana said.