SADDLE BROOK, N.J. – A career burglar with a history of breaking into churches struck again in Clifton, said authorities who sought the public's help trying to find him.
Authorities issued a warrant for the arrest of ex-con Peter Heitmann, a 27-year-old transient repeat offender, was released from the Bergen County Jail early last month after being sentenced to time served for breaking a stained glass window worth more than $4,100 at a Saddle Brook church before looting its poor boxes seven months earlier.
He also was charged with stealing a $15,000 chalice and donation box cash from St. Paul’s Church in Clifton.
This time, Heitmann pushed his way in through at window at St. Brendan's RC Church on East 1st Street and stole power tools, Clifton Police Detective Sgt. Robert Anderson said.
Heitmann served more than two years in state prison for a Warren County burglary spree in 2013 before being released in November 2016.
Saddle Brook police charged him in January with a Saddle River Road residential break-in that occurred the day after last Christmas.
Heitmann was quickly released under New Jersey’s new bail reform law, which seeks to keep only the most dangerous criminals behind bars. A judge ordered him to wear a monitoring bracelet, which authorities said he promptly cut off.
He was arrested on burglary charges again in February, this time by Elmwood Park police.
If you see Heitmann, or know where to find him, Anderson asked that you contact Clifton police: (973) 470-5 908
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