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Man, 22, arrested in baby Jesus case

Dec. 07, 2012 @ 11:36 AM

HUNTINGTON -- A man originally from Beckley, W.Va., has been charged with stealing and defacing a decorative baby Jesus, according to police and court records.

Kameron Tyler Lambert, 22, of Huntington was arrested Friday morning and arraigned in Cabell County Magistrate Court. He was charged with misdemeanor petit larceny and destruction of property. He was released on a $10,000 bond.

It marks the latest development in a case that started at 12:53 a.m., Nov. 30, when a young man swiped the figurine from an elaborate porch Nativity scene at 1102 5th Ave.

That prompted a four-day search for answers, which included police receiving an alleged confession Wednesday night and finding the figurine in a 4th Avenue apartment Thursday afternoon.

Huntington Police Detective Chris Sperry found the figurine and took Lambert into custody. He said the suspect denied any involvement in marking the figurine with sexual obscenities, anarchy symbols and anti-religious statements.

Community service remains a possible punishment, Sperry said.

Markings on the figurine included an upside down cross, an anarchy symbol, the number "666," and the phrase "I hate your God" on its backside. Other markings were found on the front, with stitching marks on its forearms and nail marks on both hands.

The figurine's eyes also were blackened with horns on each side of its head and other markings on the face. More offensive marks were placed on its chest and groin.

No photographs were allowed.

The baby Jesus was part of a nine-piece Nativity scene. It carried a retail value of more than $1,000.

Two surveillance cameras, installed as part of the display, captured a younger adult male, casually dressed with a side backpack, walk onto the Nativity's platform. The recordings show him swiping the baby Jesus and fleeing in a matter of seconds.

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