A Massachusetts man is accused of cutting off the arm of a 150-year-old statue of Jesus in Boston’s cathedral.
Police said Michael Patzelt climbed the cross in front of the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on Tuesday around 6:14 p.m. The video reportedly shows Patzelt holding onto a statue of Jesus on the cross.
Crime scene footage shows Patzelt repeatedly swinging on top of the Jesus statue, severing both of its arms.
Prosecutors said, “Boston Police received a radio call of a person hanging from a cross in the 1400 block of Washington Street. “He caused significant damage to the cross.” ”
Witness Samuel Copans said: “He was just cursing and saying he could do whatever he wanted. After the priest came out, he said some pretty vulgar things to the priest.”
Patzelt is also accused of assaulting a woman who was shopping in the area with her child.
Tashana Watson said WFXT“I pushed him.”
“I pushed him about four times to get him off, and he grabbed me by the hair and my hat and threw me. He then tried to make conversation to the effect of, ‘Just shoot me.’ .”
“It’s sad. This is a historic building. I’m a parishioner and my grandmother went to school here,” Watson added. “This attack makes everything feel like it’s open to attack.”
The Archdiocese of Boston is statement:
We would like to thank the Boston Police Department for their quick action in apprehending the suspect. Whatever this person’s motives for defacing the cross, we know that it is repairable and remains a source of prayer and hope for believers and all who find comfort in the Lord. We ask that people pray for that person and for their peace of mind.
Patzelt reportedly caused $20,000 worth of damage to the approximately 150-year-old cross. At a cathedral in Boston’s South End neighborhood, crews had already begun repairing a destroyed statue.
Michael Patzelt, 37, of Attleboro, was charged with malicious destruction of property, assault and battery, and causing injury to a church/synagogue over $5,000.
The judge wanted to know whether mental illness played a role in the church attack.
Judge Paul Trezeler said of Patzelt: “Lawyer, is this a matter of a depraved mind or a very sick mind?”
Patzelt has a long rap sheet.
“When you look at his record, you see a guy who has seven pages of committed time. … And when you go to the state of Florida’s 10-page record, there are charges similar to ours. “There’s a lot written here today,” the judge said during the hearing.
Mr Patzelt’s lawyer said his client was “remorseful”.
Patzelt is scheduled to return to court on November 30th.
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Man accused of damaging cross outside Boston church has long criminal recordwww.youtube.com