From Fox Atlanta
There was new evidence Tuesday about the mysterious break in at Bishop Eddie Long's private church office. Two young men were accused of stealing jewelry and iPad computer equipment from Bishop Eddie Long's office at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church. One would later sue Bishop Long, alleging sexual misconduct.
A FOX 5 I-team investigation found that the main purpose of the break-in was to gather evidence against Bishop Long. The investigation found that more than $100,000 in jewelry was left behind.
It was Sunday night or early Monday morning, when two men wearing dark hooded tops and white gloves headed down the street toward the church and eventually, Bishop Long's private office. The men were caught on a church security camera.
Soon after Maurice Robinson and Anthony Boyd were arrested and charged with burglary. No one knew it at the time, but it was the beginning of the sex scandal now facing Bishop Eddie Long.
Three months after the break-in, Robinson, Anthony Flagg, Spencer LeGrande and Jamal Parris all filed sexual misconduct lawsuits against Bishop Eddie Long.
Long has denied the claims in court.
Two sources familiar with the investigation said the alleged burglars contend the burglary was aimed at sending a message to Bishop Long and gathering evidence against him.
Parris, in an exclusive interview back in September, talked about the break-in.
Parris said that in his opinion, the motive had nothing to do with money.
This is the first time his opinions about Maurice Robinson and the break-in have been heard publicly.
When asked if he thought the men involved in the break-in were trying to gather evidence Parris said, "Absolutely. "
The police report shows the burglars stole the Bishop's iPhone, iPad computer with speakers and a "yet to be determined amount of jewelry." What the report doesn't say, according to a source familiar with the burglary investigation, is that the burglars left behind over a $100,000 worth of jewelry in an area within the Bishop's private bath, jewelry that easily could have been stolen.
"The truth of the matter, those who know about situation, is it isn't about that at all. That's a young man in anger who was hurt, who found a way to get at this man," Parris said.
According to sources, when caught, one of the young men said they wanted to send the Bishop a message that he was not untouchable and that his security could be breached.
Sources say it was really the phone and iPad the burglars wanted. Both were returned, but Robinson told friends and investigators he had copied all the information off the iPad and iPhone before returning it.
Parris says he heard that the iPad was copied, but he has no first hand knowledge of what was on the iPhone or iPad.
With the case now heading for mediation, any potential evidence obtained during the burglary could be used during secret settlement negotiations.
"Everything will be shown for what it is. There will be no denial about it. Evidence speaks for itself," Parris said.
Robinson has been accepted into a pretrial diversion program, and if he completes it, can have the charges against him dropped.
Boyd's case is still pending.