30-year-old Jordan Lee Abee of Jerry Crump Road in Lincolnton was arrested on charges filed by the Burke County Sheriff’s Office. He’s charged with two felony counts of breaking and entering to a place of worship.
On Monday (August 17), the Burke County Sheriff’s Office responded to a breaking and entering at both El Bethel Baptist Church and Brookwood Baptist Church of Morganton. At El Bethel Baptist Church, the suspect broke the glass out of a side door to enter. Video surveillance showed the suspect going from room to room in the church carrying a hammer. Nothing was reported missing.
The Pastor at Brookwood Baptist Church told police that while he was working at the parsonage he heard glass break. When he went outside, he saw a gray Jeep traveling through the grass headed towards Old NC 18. Video surveillance at Brookwood showed the suspect exiting the Jeep carrying a hammer. The subject broke out a window, entered the church, and later exited the church with a piece of property in his left hand.
The Burke County Sheriff’s Office posted the video surveillance photos of the suspect on their website to help identify the suspect. On Wednesday (August 19), the Sheriff’s Office received a call from the Mt. Holly Police Department in Gaston County regarding the suspect, Jordan Lee Abee. Burke County investigators were told that Abee attempted to rob a woman in Mt. Holly.
Abee was charged with break-in and robbery counts in that jurisdiction. After viewing the surveillance video posted by the Burke County Sheriff’s Office, Mt. Holly Police identified Abee as the suspect involved in the break-ins at El Bethel and Brookwood churches in Morganton. Later that day, Burke County warrants were issued for Abee.
Abee was initially confined in the Gaston Detention Facility under a $150,000 secured bond on the charges in that county. Earlier today (August 21), Abee was listed as an inmate in Burke County. No bond amount was listed. A District Court appearance was scheduled today.