A Logan man accused of breaking into the Logan Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and causing over $5,000 in damage pleaded guilty to amended charges on Tuesday.
Peter Abraham Ambrose, 34, pleaded guilty to one count each of burglary and criminal mischief — both second-degree felony charges. As part of a plea agreement, Cache County prosecutors agreed to a recommendation of no prison time in addition to credit for time served in jail.
On Christmas Eve, it was alleged Ambrose broke into the Logan Temple and damaged property with an ax. An affidavit filed with the 1st District Court stated Ambrose damaged paintings, artificial plants and curtains. The ax was found stuck in a wall behind a smashed mirror, police wrote, and a fire extinguisher had been deployed in the interior of the building. An A-frame ladder was found on the property, and surveillance footage depicted a man identified as Ambrose.
According to the affidavit, police cleared the building and left, finding no one unauthorized on the temple premises. But police were called back nearly 30 minutes later by temple workers who had found Ambrose in a locked room. He was taken into custody willingly and without further incident, police wrote.
According to a statement released from the Logan City Police Department, Ambrose was upset because it was the holiday season and he couldn’t see his children. He also made references to being frustrated with dating in his community.
Ambrose told the court at a hearing in January that he had not been taking his medications and was “wrapped up in a lot of self-anger.” He said he hadn’t prayed in two months and “had an angry spirit” with him.
Ambrose was found incompetent to proceed in his case in February and was sent to the Utah State Hospital for rehabilitation.
Ambrose was initially charged with third-degree burglary and second-degree criminal mischief; the burglary charge was later amended to a first-degree felony, according to documents filed with the court.
He is currently being held in the Cache County Jail.