MANATEE -- Two men were arrested Wednesday while trying to steal an air-conditioning unit from an Ellenton church, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies responding to Ellenton United Methodist Church about 10:26 p.m. saw Corey A. Smith, 24, standing by the unit, which had already been removed from its location. Deputies ordered him to stop, but he fled and was quickly arrested after he crossed U.S. 301 North.
The second suspect, Derek R. Hightower, 25, was arrested while sitting in a pick-up truck parked near the air-conditioning unit. Parts of the air-conditioner were already in the bed of the truck, along with several tools.
Smith, of Palmetto, was being held at the Manatee County jail on bonds totaling $2,750. He faces charges of grand theft, criminal mischief and resisting arrest.
Hightower, of Ellenton, was being held on bonds totaling $2,120, on charges of grand theft, criminal mischief and possession of drug paraphernalia.