Man charged with Back Mountain church burglary

First Posted: 5/19/2009

KINGSTON TWP. – Township police allege a shoe print recovered from a door at St. Therese’s Church rectory that was burglarized during Easter services in March 2008 was linked to Brian Joseph Rush.

Rush, 29, who was sentenced in April to 18 to 36 months in state prison for a burglary at a Bear Creek Township church and extorting the priest at St. Theresa’s Parish, was charged Tuesday morning in connection to the burglary at St. Therese’s rectory.

Police said Rush kicked in a door at the rectory while the Rev. James Paisley was performing Easter services in the church. Once inside, Rush stole property belonging to Paisley, including a laptop computer, according to arrest records.

According to court records, Rush pleaded guilty to criminal attempt to commit theft by extortion and criminal use of communication facility. Police claim Rush e-mailed Paisley demanding $10,000 or he was going to expose Paisley’s "secrets," arrest records say.

Police said in the latest criminal complaint that a forensic examination of a shoe print on a door at the rectory matched shoes that were commonly worn by Rush.

Rush was arraigned by District Judge James Tupper in Trucksville Tuesday morning on charges of burglary, theft, receiving stolen property, criminal mischief and criminal trespass. He was remanded to jail for lack of $5,000 on the latest charges.

A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled on May 27 in Central Court.


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