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franklin county times

Convicted burglar could face prison

By By Steve Swogetinsky/The Meridian Star
April 4, 2001
An Alabama man, convicted Tuesday in Lauderdale County Circuit Court of burglary of a church, could face 14 years in prison.
It took a jury about two hours to find Frank Stoney Stewart, 57, of Mobile, Ala., guilty. Assistant District Attorney Veldore Heidelberg said Stewart could be sentenced as a habitual offender.
Stewart was convicted of a burglary that took place at Briarwood Baptist Church on Aug. 2, 1999. While in the building, Stewart was confronted by a minister, according to court records. Stewart claimed he was on the way to DeKalb and had stopped to use the restroom.
A door that had been forcibly opened and a broken window were among items of evidence brought against Stewart. He was standing in the office when the minister found him. Before he left the church, he gave his name. The minister also took down his car tag number, and that's how the Lauderdale County sheriff's department tracked him down.
Steve Swogetinsky is regional editor of The Meridian Star. E-mail him at sswogetinsky@themeridianstar.com.