Phoenix • A mostly intact first-edition Book of Mormon stolen from a Mesa bookstore has been returned to the store owner now that it’s no longer needed as evidence against a man who has pleaded guilty to theft in the case.
Helen Schlie smiled when she read her late husband’s signature on a back page after Mesa police detectives returned the book on Monday.
Schlie discovered the book was missing last May.
The Arizona Republic (http://bit.ly/W02ixA ) reports that 49-year-old Jay Michael Linford is to be sentenced Feb. 12 in Maricopa County Superior Court. He was arrested at a friend’s apartment in northern Virginia.
A plea agreement calls for Linford to pay $7,500 of restitution to a Dallas book dealer, Reid Moon.
Moon purchased the book from Linford without knowing it was stolen.