On June 5, 1973, the People's Court of Kaunas Rayon considered the case of [Mrs.] Dambickienė, who was charged with burglarizing the churches in Babtai and Vandžiogala. [Miss] Martusevičiūtė was the presiding judge. The court's decision stated that Dambickienė's guilt had been fully proven, for she had burglarized the churches in Babtai and Vandžiogala and had in addition stolen from the cemeteries some decorative linens and candles that were affixed to wreaths. All these items were found in her possession during a search. Because the accused was ill with sclerosis and undergoing treatment at the psychiatric hospital, she was not sentenced. The plaintiff in the case was a plain village woman who couldn't even pose a simple question. The man who had been living with the accused for ten years, one Savickas, took part in the court proceedings, not as one who was guilty, but only as a witness.
This trial was not an exceptional occurrence in Soviet court proceedings. In the summer of 1964 the church in Kaišiadorys was burglarized. The burglar was apprehended as he tried to break into the church in Vievis. It became apparent that he was "a man of wide-ranging activities"— he had already burglarized a Russian Orthodox church in Riga.
The Procurator's Office unwillingly drew up a case, and during the trial on October 6, Judge Kasperavičius tried in every possible way to vindicate the thief. "He was in straitened circumstances... Noticing the steeples of the church, he thought that perhaps there would be unused monies here..." As though that were not enough, the judge made use of this opportunity to make accusations against the church and the clergy. Unable to put up with this, Father Šalčiūnas spoke up, saying to the judge: "Just who is on trial here: this thief, or we, the representatives of the church?"
The burglar was put on probation and freed immediately. He had been released from preventative custody even before the trial began.
Such court proceedings only encourage thieves to burglarize churches. As an example, in July, 1973, two hooligans broke into Alytus Church No. 2 at nighttime and beat its caretaker with rocks until he was unconscious.
In 1973 the Kėdainiai Rayon Department of Culture dismissed Head Librarian [Miss] Janina Rutkūnaitė for "a serious crime"—she had gone to church on Easter Sunday!