Friday, June 17, 2011
St. Anthony of Padua Relic Recovered!
Police recovered the relic of St. Anthony of Padua on Thursday at the Long Beach home of Maria Solis, 41, and Solis was arrested on suspicion of commercial burglary, Long Beach Deputy Police Chief Robert Luna said Thursday evening.
Parishioners applauded when a police officer placed the delicate gold and silver reliquary containing a tiny shard of bone on a table at the news conference in front of the church.
Luna said detectives canvassed the neighborhood with a composite sketch of a person of interest who was seen at five Masses the day before the theft.
Investigators found video surveillance tape that captured her walking to St. Anthony Catholic Church on Monday, the day of the theft, and the day before, he said. Detectives said they found the relic displayed in her living room of her home, about a mile from the church, Luna said.
St. Anthony's pastor, the Rev. Jose Magana, said the relic appeared to be undamaged.
"St. Anthony is the patron saint of travelers and lost things but today he's also the honorary saint of the Long Beach Police Department," Magana said. "He just wanted to come home because it belongs to everyone."
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