Shelby Township police said Tuesday they've arrested three people in connection with a string of break-ins at area churches.
Shelby Township Police Chief Roland Woelkers said Jesse Vincent Brusseau-Meray, 20, Eric Joseph-Edward Eby, 19, and Logan Patrick Gerring, 17, were arrested Monday while allegedly trying to break into a Speedway Station in Shelby Township.
The suspects allegedly used grinding tools to break into safes and used a radio system for communication.
"They are sophisticated individuals," Woelkers said. "They've done everything from what we call smash-and-grabs, where they've broken windows and gone into buildings, and they've done sophisticated safe jobs where they've used special equipment to get into these safes."
Cash and other items stolen from the churches were found when police executed three different search warrants at two homes and a storage unit.
Woelkers said Eby worked at one of the churches that was broken into -- St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Utica. He was not an employee there but did help out at the church.
The suspects are also being investigated for 12 other businesses break-ins, including a police supply store.
About the church break-ins
The suspects are accused of breaking into St. Therese of Lisieux Catholic Church after it held six Easter Sunday masses and getting away with about $40,000 -- mostly checks, but still thousands of dollars in cash.
Thieves also hit St. Luke Lutheran Church in Clinton Township, disabling its security system and cutting into their vault.