The gold-gilded cross and weather vane disappeared between October 5 and 14 at the St. Jacobi church in the city centre, police said. But neither the church management nor the company currently employed to restore the building's exterior know exactly when someone scaled the 72-metre tower to swipe its crowning glory.
The crest weighed 30 kilos and is estimated to be worth some €10,000.
Police believe the thieves reached the crest by climbing up scaffolding that currently surrounds the church for renovations.
The repairs, meant to fix weather damage, are probably the reason no one noticed the missing spire decorations. Both the construction workers and church authorities apparently assumed the golden cross had been removed and stored during the repairs.
An October 5 photo of the tower – one of the Göttingen skyline's most prominent features - showed the crest still intact, but another photo taken on October 14 showed the tower had vanished, police said.