Local News

Vandalism At Hillsborough Church Being Investigated As Hate Crime

Posted November 18, 2004

— A hate crime is under investigation in Orange County.

Sheriff's deputies recently found Cross Roads Baptist Church covered in satanic graffiti. Rev. Philip Moore said he has spent two decades teaching others to do the right thing.

"It really made me feel like Satan had been working in someone's life and they decided to cause us problems here," he said. "It caused us to realize how evil people are."

However, when word got out about the vandalism, church members quickly joined forces and cleaned what they could.

Eva Cecil, who lives across from the church, said in her 90 years, she has never seen anything like that.

"It hurt me because they come right here and tear up the church," she said.

Investigators think the vandalism is more than just a teenage prank. They plan to charge the people responsible with a hate crime. The person could face up to 10 years in jail.

Once investigators make an arrest, Moore said church members have already decided the punishment.

"They'd like to see them have a choice of either going to jail for a year or maybe having to work with us on Sunday mornings for a year and if they came to us, we'd just love them to the Lord," he said.

Investigators are following a number of leads, but they do not have a motive as to why someone would vandalize the church.

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