Brazil City Police and officers with the Clay County Sheriff's Department arrested a man late Thursday evening after he allegedly broke into the Benevolent Ministries office at Cooper Towers, 120 W. Jackson St., Brazil, and left with a box full of items.
Joseph L. Webster, 22, no known address, was arrested and booked at the Clay County Justice Center on preliminary charges of burglary, trespass, receiving stolen property and possession of a controlled substance.
According to Brazil City Police Chief Dave Archer, BCPD K-9 Officer Kenny Hill was dispatched to Cooper Towers at approximately 8:45 p.m., after residents at a nearby apartment complex reported a man allegedly attempting to break into a vehicle.
Archer told The Brazil Times a witness reported Webster was allegedly attempting to get in a vehicle that was not his. According to Archer, Webster then walked away from the vehicle and attempted to take a bicycle off a rack that was chained up.
When he was unable to take the bicycle, Archer said Webster allegedly broke into the Benevolent Ministry office, prompting witnesses to call police.
Prior to police arrival, Archer said Webster had exited the building with an armload of boxes, including various items, including personal check books of a ministry employee, a cross, religious decorations, a DVD recorder, a printer and other items.
"He just started loading things up," Archer said.
Archer said there were tool marks on the inside of the building where the suspect allegedly used a tool to gain entry into the office.
Archer said witnesses reported Webster hid for a few minutes behind a generator in back of the facility before getting up and walking away southbound on Franklin Street items in tow.
When officers arrived at the scene, witnesses pointed them in the direction Webster walked away.
Hill and K-9 Officer Anya caught up with Webster on Ridge Street and apprehended him.
Webster was in possession of the stolen items, in addition to a knife and pills he did not have a prescription for.
Assisting Hill and K-9 Officer Anya were CCSD Sgt. K-9 Officer Josh Clarke and CCSD Dep. Nick Workman.
Jail officials confirmed Webster remained incarcerated at CCJC on a $25,000 cash bond awaiting formal arraignment per the court calendar.
The case is currently under review by the Clay County Prosecutor's Office.