Eight suspects identified in Palestine Church vandalism

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There are eight suspects who have been identified by the Carroll County Sheriff’s Department in the vandalism of the abandoned Palestine Church building, according to chief deputy David Bunn. The church is located on Highway 424 between Clarksburg and Cedar Grove.

Carroll County deputy Michael Sevarns went to the church Oct. 16 after receiving a call advising that the former place of worship had been vandalized.

The vandalism involves four juvenile females and three juvenile males and one adult male. All are from McKenzie with the exception of one who is from Atwood.

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Three of the suspects, all males who are 18, 17 and 17 and from McKenzie, will be charged this week with several counts related to the incident.

The charges will be desecration of a venerated object, vandalism over $2,500 but less than $10,000 and criminal trespassing.

The other five are awaiting possible charges of criminal trespassing from district attorney Matt Stowe.

Some of the damages included: All of the storm windows were destroyed, the piano was moved and flipped over on its front side, the back door was shattered, rocks were used to make two holes in the floor, and some of the floorboards were ripped up and thrown into the holes, four pews had been thrown or shoved through windows and left dangling there, and windows in the front double doors were knocked out.

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