Stained glass window smashed in Co Tyrone church burglary
POLICE have appealed for information after thieves smashed a stained glass window to enter a Co Tyrone church.
St Theresa’s Church in Sion Mills was targeted overnight between Saturday and Sunday in an incident police believe could be linked to a series of burglaries in the area.
Officers have said the burglars cut themselves on glass during the burglary and "kindly left a blood sample for us to forensically examine".
A restaurant opposite the church, Restaurant 1861, was also broken into and two tills and an ATM reader were stolen, but later retrieved and are being examined. A glass display at the restaurant was also damaged.
In a post on social media, the restaurant said that it was "open for business as normal".
Andy Patton, from Sion Mills Community Forum, said residents were left disgusted by the break-ins.
Urging anyone with information to come forward, a PSNI spokesperson said: "A burglary, like any crime, is unacceptable but I'm sure you'll agree that in particular a burglary in a place of worship is particularly sickening and abhorrent."
In February 2017, burglars tried to target the parochial house at St Teresa's while a priest was celebrating Mass in the church.
On that occasion, Fr Peter McLaughlin was saying Saturday Vigil Mass while attempts were made to enter the house, causing damage to a window.