UPDATE: Chattanooga church damaged by vandals - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Local baptist church destroyed by vandals

UPDATE: Chattanooga church damaged by vandals

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) - UPDATE:  Chattanooga Police arrested a man who they say vandalized Valley Memorial Baptist.  Police say 19-year-old Garrett Michael Belanger is responsible for the incident over the weekend.

The glass on the doors was shattered and the plants in the front were pulled from their pots.  

Inside the building, all  the carpet was water logged, a urinal and two water fountains ripped from the wall.

Belanger was taken into custody Tuesday.               
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Valley Memorial Baptist Church members in Chattanooga were left in shock when they arrived Sunday morning for service. The building and everything inside it was destroyed by vandals overnight.

The glass on the doors were shattered and the plants in the front were uprooted from their pots.  Inside the building, all of the carpet is now water logged. 

Someone ripped the men's urinal and two main water fountains from the wall. Bibles, pews, the sound system, TV's and even the children's playroom are considered a total loss.

Church member Dorothy Wood says, “ I am heartbroken someone would do this. There is water everywhere, pews turned over, broken-in walls and holes in the doors.”

Pastor Horace Crawford showed detectives something the criminals didn't get their hands on,  the security camera placed right by the front door.  He says, “I want justice.  I hope they catch whoever did this.”

Randall Crawford, the church music director says, “when I first arrived I thought, am I seeing things or is this just a bad dream? It is hard to imagine that anyone would do this to a church.”

Chattanooga Police gathered the security camera video Sunday. They want anyone with information to call their tip line (423) 698-3333.
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