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2 arrested following break-ins at area churches

Sierra Lynn Smith

Jesse J. Hawkins

Two people have been arrested by the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office following a rash of break-ins at area rural churches.

Reedy Grove Pentecostal Holiness Church, Cedar Grove Baptist, Mt. Pleasant Baptist and New Prospect Baptist reported burglaries and vandalism on March 26-27. Both Cedar Grove and Mt. Pleasant churches are located on Indian Mound Road. Reedy Grove is in Waterloo and New Prospect is on Highway 221 south of Laurens.

Jesse James Hawkins, 19, of Gray Court, and Sierra Lynn Smith, 19, of Laurens were arrested Sunday and now face multiple charges related to those crimes.

Hawkins and Smith have each been charged with three counts of second-degree burglary, four counts of malicious injury to a place of worship, larceny and arson.

We are very thankful to have these twisted individuals charged in a timely manner with the terrible crimes committed,” said Laurens County Sheriff Don Reynolds. “The fact is, they will stand before the ultimate judge one day.

I surely commend the work of the deputies involved in these arrests.”

According to the LCSO, the investigation is ongoing and more charges are possible.

1 Comment

  1. Jeff on May 31, 2023 at 1:15 pm

    The “ultimate judge” hahaha Put your bible down and just be a cop.

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