Thieves steal meat from feeding programme

  • Keeping up the good work: David Thompson and a team of volunteers feed 175 people daily  (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Keeping up the good work: David Thompson and a team of volunteers feed 175 people daily (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

  • Keeping up the good work: David Thompson and a team of volunteers feed 175 people daily (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Keeping up the good work: David Thompson and a team of volunteers feed 175 people daily (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

  • Keeping up the good work: David Thompson and a team of volunteers feed 175 people daily (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Keeping up the good work: David Thompson and a team of volunteers feed 175 people daily (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

  • Christ Church, Warwick

    Christ Church, Warwick


Thieves stole food destined to feed the hungry from a church during the weekend.

David Thompson, a volunteer at Christ Church, Warwick, said he was “sad and disappointed” after thieves escaped with about 90 pounds of frozen chicken legs and a cooked turkey.

He added: “There’s no sign of forced entry, so we have to assume it was somebody who had access with a key.

“I also assume that they had watched us because they knew our movements and when they could actually come into the church.”

Mr Thompson said: “We’re doing this for the community — this is a church-led initiative and we’re helping our community, so I don’t understand why somebody would want to do something like this.

“If they’re willing to come here and say ‘I’m hungry and I need to feed my family’, we’ll willingly feed them, but for someone to just come in and take stuff, it’s just sad.”

Mr Thompson was speaking after the Presbyterian church on Middle Road had about $200 worth of food taken.

He said that he and other volunteers had cooked six turkeys on Saturday afternoon to feed people the next day.

Mr Thompson added that the turkeys had been left to cool on kitchen counters before another volunteer returned later to put them in the fridge overnight.

But the volunteer noticed that one had gone missing.

Mr Thompson said: “Sunday morning I spoke to him on the phone and he said ‘it’s funny, but I only counted five turkeys.’

“I knew we cooked six, so I came to the church, counted and sure enough there were only five turkeys.”

Mr Thompson added: “I started to check around wondering if there was anything else missing.

“I opened the freezer door and in the freezer I had three big boxes of chicken legs — they were gone as well.”

Mr Thompson said that the church had an alarm system but it was not operational when the thief struck.

The church had offered meals to the homeless for the past eight years and had created a special meals programme for people affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mr Thompson said that the public was “shocked” and “disgusted” by the theft and had joined forces with other volunteer programmes to make up the loss.

He added: “One thing that came out is that the Salvation Army called me and said ‘We heard about your break-in, it’s terrible and we’re bringing three boxes of chicken around for you now.’

“I didn’t know what to say — they need it as much as we do but they said ‘you guys have always helped us, we’re glad to be of help to the church’.”

The Reverend Alistair Bennett, the minister of Christ Church, said that whoever stole the food must have had a key or a copy.

He added that some church members had keys to get into the building.

But he said: “I think one could say without a shadow of doubt that it wasn’t any of them.”

Mr Bennett said that the church security system had been repaired and that they planned to change the locks.

He added: “It’s sad and frustrating to see that someone would do something like this.

“They’re taking away food from their fellow members of the community — that’s kind of sad.”

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Published Jun 23, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Jun 23, 2020 at 8:23 am)

Thieves steal meat from feeding programme

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