Thief steals from The Refinery Mission; owner forgives because it’s what they preach

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OPELOUSAS, La. (KLFY) – A laptop was stolen from The Refinery, a Faith-Based Mission for Men in Opelousas this weekend, and it was all caught on camera.
The Refinery is a faith-based mission for men in need of help or guidelines to get back on their feet, and become stable again.
 
The thief has been identified as William Henagan by Opelousas PD. He was arrested Tuesday.
The interesting part of this whole ordeal, is that he was one of The Refinery’s former members according to the organizations leadership.
 
Now they’re forgiving him, because they say it’s what they preach.
 
“And as you can see, he’s going to drag the computer and just walk on out,” said Johnny Carriere, Executive Director of the Refinery Mission.
 
On Saturday morning Carriere woke up to see that one of their laptops was stolen, and it was all caught on their cameras.
 
“For someone to come and just take something like that, and in a time where people are already moving around here. I felt violated and frustrated,” said Carriere.
 
Whether they’re homeless or coming from jail, hospitals and in need of shelter, with over 60 beds, The Refinery gives men a place to stay and resources to find employment.
 
“We want a guy to come to us in whatever state he’s in, and we just want to pour love into him, share the Gospel with him, and walk with him from the time he gets here til he moves on,” said Carriere.
 
“Without this place, I’d probably go back on the street with this same life, now I just came here to Refinery and it’s just wonderful,’ said Frederick Thomas, who stays at the mission.
 
He was just released from Angola after serving for 44 years.
Thomas in at the age of 17 on a murder charge.
But with the help of The Parole Project, he was released about 6 months ago.
 
He says the person who took the laptop is preventing men in the program from getting jobs.
 
“This a place that tries to help people, and you know it’s just a dumb move and it makes no sense,” he said.
 
Carriere says the program is all about forgiveness, and that’s why in this same case, they’re offering forgiveness for the person that stole their computer.
 
“The guy that took the computer-I love him, I forgive him. If we could raise awareness that, make good decisions, be wise, think about things you do, you know there’s people that do care in this world,” he said.
 
Henagan was issued a citation for Misdemeanor Theft and he was released.
 
The laptop was recovered somehow, but it did not work.
Some members of the community have already bought a new computer for The Refinery Mission, as well as a number of gift cards.
 
For more information on The Refinery, visit their website.

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