A man suspected of stealing $22,000 worth of Christmas gifts meant for foster children from a Clermont church was arrested Tuesday.
Thieves stole hundreds of toys, bicycles, clothes and gift cards intended for more than 100 foster and adopted children served by the charity. The charity had collected the items during weeks-long donation drives and was planning to distribute them just days before Christmas.
Last week, detectives discovered Brown’s fingerprint inside a plastic bag found inside the church, but the 21-year-old from Clermont couldn’t truthfully explain how his fingerprint ended up on the bag, authorities said. Church volunteers said they didn’t know Brown and had never seen him at the church, according to an arrest affidavit. He is being accused of burglary and second-degree grand theft in addition to other unrelated charges dealing with firearms and stolen property. He is being held at the Lake County Jail on a $32,500 bond.