Nativity Thieves Caught, School Principal Says

Categories: Crime
Thieves seemingly bucking for damnation by ripping off a church school's nativity play costumes during mass have been caught, SF Weekly has learned.

But Rodney Pierre-Antoine still finds himself in purgatory. The principal of St. Felicitas Catholic School in San Leandro hasn't yet learned if the purloined outfits -- which were generously loaned to him -- will be returned. So far, he says, "only two wings and one halo have been recovered thus far.

"Someone had lent me these handmade costumes," continued the school principal. "When someone loans you something, you want to be able to return it."

Pierre-Antoine's troubles started on Sunday, when thieves targeted his Toyota Camry and made off with a checkbook and what appeared to be a bag of Macy's clothing that was sitting on one of the seats. Of course those weren't store-bought clothes but hand-made costumes.

Putting Pierre-Antoine in a double bind, opening curtain for the Christmas play is tonight.

He tells SF Weekly he received a call late yesterday from the Alameda County Sheriff's Department. The alleged thieves were caught at a traffic stop, and Pierre-Antoine's checkbook was recovered, along with some nativity paraphernalia. Sheriff's deputies will go through the suspects' residences today in an attempt to recover the costumes.

In the meantime, another parishioner has stepped forward and provided costumes that can be used for tonight's show. The principal is hoping the original outfits for Mary, Joseph, five angels, six shepherds, and three wise men turn up along with the pair of wings and halo that were apparently rattling around the suspects' vehicle.

"Ill be praying for them," Pierre-Antoine said of the alleged thieves. "Hopefully they'll grow from this experience and make better decisions in the future."

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