The Saskatchewan RCMP have noticed a significant increase in the number of breaking and entering, thefts, and mischief in churches around the province.
From January to November, 64 of these incidents have occurred in 55 churches across Saskatchewan. This represents an increase of 60 percent in break-ins in Saskatchewan churches since last year.
This new trend affects churches of all denominations. Police note nothing indicates these crimes are motivated by hate, racism, or ideology.
In most of these incidents, the doors of the church have been opened by force at night, after the church was closed and left vacant. Items such as money, electronics, computers, guitars, safes, freezers and refrigerators were stolen.
43 of this year’s church break-ins occurred in Central Saskatchewan. The churches in this area have seen an increase of 173 percent in break-ins since last year.
Saskatchewan RCMP is asking Saskatchewanians to help make church buildings more secure. Stay alert, especially at night, and report any suspicious activity around churches to your local RCMP detachment or police service.
If you are a resident, keep an eye on your community’s churches and ensure your religious representatives know about this new increase of break-ins into churches.