Millersburg community center break-in investigated

by Peter Jakey-Managing Editor

A community gathering place in Millersburg was at the center of attention of law enforcement Oct. 8 following a break-in of the Case Township Community Center.

Subjects broke out a double-pane window on the south side of the building to gain entrance and apparently were looking to steal money from the donation box. It was called in at 7:22 a.m. Two Millersburg residents, 19 and 22, are believed to have been involved.  Their names will be released after both have been arraigned.

According to the incident report, a couple was going to walk in the building that morning and noticed the damaged donation box in the hallway. Further in the building, they found broken glass in the southeast corner of the building and called 9-1-1.

“We have a window smashed with the west doors already open,” said township supervisor Dean Storms. “The building was already open at five in the morning and these characters did not come until 5:23 a.m., 5:25 a.m.”

Storms and other community members helped develop the community center when Millersburg Elementary School closed in 2009. It houses the township offices, a room for Alpena Community College satellite classes and a branch of the Presque Isle District Library.

Investigation revealed the suspects broke the window using some sort of burglary tool and pushed some fold-up tables out the way to enter the building. Upon entering the building, the suspects destroyed a box intended to collect donations for using the community center.

“They got hardly anything,” said Storms. “We don’t know exactly, but it can’t be more than $20. Why would you risk having all this trouble on you for that kind of money.”

After breaking the box open and taking the donations, the suspects are believed to have dumped vinegar and cleaning solution in the area in an attempt to destroy evidence.

Later that day at approximately 8 p.m., both suspects arrived in the lobby of the sheriff’s department to turn themselves in. Additionally, the two also are suspected of breaking into a vacant rental home on Linden Street and breaking windows and punching holes in drywall.

Nothing was believed to have been taken from that building.

Both were arrested and lodged in the county jail.