Ornate door handles stolen from 100-year-old church

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SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10)-A more than 100-year-old Schenectady church has its ornate door handles back after being stolen off the church property. Police say they have a good idea of who the suspect might be thanks to evidence in the form of security video.

The security video first shows a man walking by the entrances of the church of St Adalbert on Monday around 2:30 in the afternoon. He walks around the corner of the building. But then he returns minutes later, walking up one entrance while reaching in his back pocket for something. His hands appear to be twisting something around as he looks over his shoulders.

He does the same at every entrance and appears to be walking down one stairway holding something in his hand. He then removes his t-shirt and appears to place something inside of it. The parishioners believe they were the door handles that were found to be missing later that afternoon.

The cast brass door handles are believed to be more than 100 years old, going back to when the Church was built in 1910, erected on the site off Lansing Street in Schenectady where the previous church built years before was destroyed by fire.

The ornate church is the centerpiece of what once was a vibrant Polish neighborhood and every detail including the door handles is cherished.

Schenectady Police say they have an idea as to who the man in the video is and that the door handles were sold to a nearby scrapyard on Monday the day they went missing.

The manager told us his staff had no idea they were stolen and that they were returned to police on Wednesday after the scrapyard was contacted.

The handles are now back on the church doors and said to be better-secured once again ready to welcome parishioners to services.

If you know the man in the video you are asked to please give Schenectady Police a call at: (518) 382-5200 EXT 5500.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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