Police: Burglary suspect was captured driving church van

Sammie Fairley (Photo source: Gulfport Police Dept.)
Sammie Fairley (Photo source: Gulfport Police Dept.)

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - A man who police say broke into a Gulfport church was found in Covington County driving the stolen church van filled with loot. Sammie Fairley, 49, of Gulfport is now charged with Burglary of a Church, Motor Vehicle Theft and Burglary of a Business.

At all started early Saturday morning around 3am when officers were called to the Chevron on East Pass Road. The alarm had been tripped, and the store burglarized. The getaway vehicle was identified as the church bus from Mount Olive Baptist Church on Rippy Road.

The officers then headed to the church and found it had also been burglarized.

Later in the day, Sammie Fairley was stopped in Covington County driving the missing bus. Police say the church vehicle was filled with stolen property from both the church and the gas station.

Fairley was out on bond from Jones County where he faces another burglary charge. And even before that, he was already facing yet another burglary charge in Gulfport.

Fairley is now being held in the Harrison County Adult Detention Center on a $300,000 bond.

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