Southeast Atlanta food pantry broken into twice

Atlanta police need your help catching whoever broke into a southeast Atlanta food pantry.

It happened at the International Christian Fellowship Church and church leaders said it happened more than once within two weeks.

The church gives out food to the community twice a week and it’s been a staple in the community for nearly 20 years.  

“It’s just nonsense,” Associate Pastor Thephilus Massaquio said.

The break-ins have been a big set back for leaders at the church and their efforts to help the community.

“This whole area right here was brick. They broke down the brick and went through the wall. That was the first damage,” Massaquio said.

Massaquio said someone took a sledgehammer to break bricks to get into the building and  to get food and other belongings on October third.

The person came back this past Monday and Tuesday for more.

“They tore down everything. The window frame and everything. They tore everything down,” Massaquio said.

Security footage caught what looks like a young man outside the building trying to get in. The camera then caught the man inside the building with his flashlight before he realized he’s being recorded and he cut the wires.

“We give them food every Tuesday and Saturday. We give them food. I don’t know what the intention was,” Massaquio said.

“For this to happen in this community is a shame,” Coreen Dent said.

Coreen Dent is the president of the South Side Concerned Citizens Association and said enough is enough.

“This is ridiculous. You are stealing items that are free,” Dent said.

Church leaders said they are looking at over $5,000 in damages but it will not stop them from giving back.

“It makes no sense. If you needed the food we give the food out. If you needed the food all you had to do was come and ask,” Massaquio said.

“You didn’t just steal from the church, you stole from the community. You stole from yourself,” Dent said.

Atlanta police are asking anyone with information to come forward.