ADRIAN (WWJ/AP) – A college student has been sentenced to six months in jail for stealing and destroying a 19th century Bible from a Masonic Temple in southern Michigan.
Ronald Huskins II, 22, was sentenced Thursday in Lenawee County Circuit Court on one count of larceny.
Huskins didn’t speak in court. His attorney, Jill Varnes-Richardson, said Huskins was under the influence of marijuana and alcohol when the Bible was stolen, and is working to get past substance abuse problems.
Judge Margaret Noe told Huskins that the loss has caused “irreversible sadness and pain.”
“By now it must be glaringly apparent to you… the effect of your actions has caused irreversible sadness and pain,” Noe said, noting that the use of drugs and alcohol kept Huskins from clearly understanding the results of his actions.
Police say the large Bible and ceremonial ornaments were taken during a July 20, 2011 burglary at the Palmyra Masonic Temple, about 55 miles southwest of Detroit. Huskins allegedly told investigators the Bible was placed in an old refrigerator and burned. He didn’t discuss a motive.
The Bible, which is believed to have been printed in 1859, was once appraised at $500, but is considered irreplaceable to the Palmyra Masons. A Masonic Temple official has said that the Bible was used at each monthly meeting and ceremony of the Palmyra Masons since its 1866 charter.
Huskins won’t start his six-month sentence until he completes his current classes at Monroe Community College. He must pay $545 for the Bible and $1,250 in other legal costs.
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