Church armed with 32 surveillance cameras records man vandalizing building

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Murray Hill United Methodist Church off college street was vandalized early Friday morning. Fortunately they did catch the suspect on camera because the church is armed with 32 surveillance cameras, practically tracking the suspect's every move.

First Coast News wanted to show the surveillance video to the public to try and identify the suspect, but the church declined, saying they only wanted to give the video to the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office at this time while the investigation is ongoing.

Pastor Haley Eccles said their security system alerted staff when it picked up voices on their property.

"There’s a couple of spots, you just have to look for it, you can see here there’s a couple spatters here, and some blood here," Eccles said.

She said spots of blood on the pavement were left behind by this vandal most likely from when he tossed over  concrete benches and then took the broken fragments and threw them at their Fellowship Center, shattering several windows.

"You can see shards of glass flying in front of that camera," she said.

She said she is trying to keep perspective as they move forward with about $2,000 in damages so far.

She said sometimes people take their anger out on churches for a variety of reasons. 

"I imagine that kind of makes us a target if church has been difficult in someone’s life so I believe God still loves this person and I hope this church shows that kind of love even in the midst of us being hurt in the process," she said.

She said she believes the suspect may have been under the influence of some substance. JSO is investigating.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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