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Church break-in leads to felon’s rearrest

Police say images captured on a security camera led to a Wilson man’s arrest for breaking into a church and stealing sound equipment.

Kenneth Brian Blackmon

Kenneth Brian Blackmon, 44, of 3240 Turnage Road, is charged with felony breaking and entering of a place of worship and felony larceny after breaking and entering, according to a release from Sgt. Eric McInerny, public information officer with the Wilson Police Department.

Officers responded to the City of Refuge Church at 138 Walnut St. around 2:27 a.m. Friday concerning a burglary that had occurred earlier. The church is in Wilson’s Five Points neighborhood.

“The caller was an unknown citizen that was walking by,” McInerny said. “Officers arrived on scene and observed the front glass door shattered.”

Investigating officers contacted a church member and determined that a sound board valued at $500 had been stolen. 

McInerny said the theft was captured on the church’s security camera and officers were able to identify Blackmon as the suspect.

On Tuesday, officers obtained warrants and arrested Blackmon. He was given a $25,000 secured bond.

According to the N.C. Department of Public Safety website, Blackmon was convicted of felony first-degree burglary om Aug. 31, 2000. The crime was related to another conviction for a felony second-degree sexual offense in Wilson County.

Blackmon was sent to state prison for 15 years and three months on the two convictions and was released on Dec. 10, 2016.

The church break-in occurred after Blackmon posted a $75,000 secured bail bond and was released from the Wilson County Detention Center following his arrest on attempted common-law robbery, kidnapping, breaking and entering and simple assault charges.

He also has pending charges: 15 counts of felony obtaining property by false pretense, three counts of felony selling or delivering heroin and two counts each of felony possession of heroin and felony financial card fraud. 

Police ask anyone with information about the case to call the Wilson Police Department at 252-399-2323 or Crime Stoppers at 252-243-2255.