Justin Thomas Beall, a parolee, stole $1,000 from a Berrien Center church, but he tells the judge he isn’t a bad person. This 25-year-old man took the money from a drop box at the Village Seventh-Day Adventist Church. He was sentenced to 120 days in jail for the crime, which was caught on the church’s security camera. So far, this church thief sounds like an upstanding member of society, right? Well, the story gets better.
The Herald Palladium reports that this man has stolen from people who have tried to help him. He stole his foster mother’s credit card to buy pizza, and he stole items from two friends. Prior to his conviction, the church thief lived in an adult foster care home, and instead of being thankful that he had a place to sleepÂ—unlike many Berrien County residentsÂ—he decided to bite the hand that feeds him. It is possible to start to feel sorry for him, but then again, he did rob a church.
Beall can’t say that he didn’t know better. He was on parole for a 2007 sentence for second-degree home invasion. You would think his sentencing for that would have reminded him that stealing has negative consequences; however, Beall’s lawyer said Beall didn’t think of the consequences. Beall claims that he isn’t a bad person and that he just needs to break the habit of stealing. Obviously that would be in his best interest.
He has been locked up since August 8 and won’t get credit for any of that time served since he was in violation of his parole when he committed the larceny in a building. Surely, this church thief can figure out some ways to do just that during his 120-day stint in the slammer.