HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A couple’s first date in Hendersonville, Tennessee, turned into a church burglary. And then a trip to jail.
Police in Hendersonville said the two people, identified as a 19-year-old woman and a 20-year-old man, were on their first date when they broke into the Indian Lake Peninsula Church at around 12:50 a.m. on Thursday.
The couple confessed to the crime, police said, claiming they broke into the church because they wanted to play the piano and thought a church might have one they could use.
Surveillance footage from the outside of the church shows the two pulling up to the church in a 2004 Ford Mustang. The man can be seen with a surprised smile on his face when they try the door and find it unlocked.
After entering the church, they stayed to play piano for about 30 minutes, police said.
“Both subjects admitted to detectives that they were looking for a piano to play because they both play the piano, they knew churches had pianos so they were looking for an unlocked church to play the piano,” said Detective Stephan Fye of the Hendersonville Police Department.
Police said the two also stole four bibles and two drumsticks when they left. The surveillance footage shows the woman picking up a church collection plate, which she reportedly took as a souvenir.
They’re also heard talking about their shock at discovering a piano.
Female: “I found a piano. I’m so shocked we found one at the first church.”
Male: “I know right?”
Female: “And there were so many more churches I was ready to go to.”
Male: “Oh my god.”
The church’s pastor discovered the break-in that morning and called the police.
Detectives and patrol officers worked to identify the suspects using surveillance footage. Police were able to identify the woman’s 2004 Mustang; they quickly found both suspects from there.
The two later confessed and surrendered the stolen church items.
“They just admitted it was dumb, probably should not have done it. They knew it was a mistake inherently,” said Fye. “They did not apologize.”
The couple was charged with misdemeanor theft and felony burglary.
Indian Lake Peninsula Church Administrative Pastor Drew Altom said he hopes the young people at least learn something from their actions.
“I would tell them don’t let this one incident define you. Learn something. And together, let’s continue to grow. We all make mistakes, but we are all held accountable for those mistakes as well.”
Altom said he is very grateful to the police for the quick response and resolution to the case. Church officials also confirmed to WFXR’s sister station, WKRN, that the unlocked door was repaired immediately.