The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench

Hate crime: Catholic school vandalized


On May 24, the school of St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, which is located in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, was vandalized in an apparent hate crime.

Police officers responded on Monday to a report of a break-in at St. Rose of Lima Catholic school in Maywood, Calif. After surveying the extensive damage done to the kitchen area, police began to realize the malicious nature of the crime.

In addition to the number “666” being written in different parts of the kitchen, a cross was displayed sacrilegiously and a picture of Our Lady of Guadalupe was stabbed with a knife.


Maywood police said that the evidence displayed was consistent with the nature of a hate crime. No arrests have been reported at this time and the Maywood – Cuhady Police Department is asking for public assistance in helping solve the investigation.

A video of the damage is below.

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posted May 26, 2010 at 12:39 pm

I hope they catch the guilty party. Hate crimes are not cool in any context. It could be someone random who is off their meds, or someone with a lucid hate agenda toward the church. My money would first be placed on a current or recent student with emotional problems, either recently expelled or in constant trouble at the school. In 12 years of Catholic school growing up, I remember a number of vandalism and break-in cases, mostly at the grade school, and as far as I remember, they were all carried out by insiders. In fact every school vandalism case I ever came across as a journalist involved the students of the victim school, or rarely, a rival school in athletics etc.
The fact that the kitchen area was attacked suggests to me that it was someone with a grudge against that school rather than the faith as a whole. People who just hate a church in general tend to go for the most visible symbol of it – ie the church building itself. They are often open for late night vigils and usually have little if any security.

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posted May 26, 2010 at 1:24 pm

The greater crime is that Catholics call vandalism a hate crime but opposed the extension of federal hate crimes protection to anti-gay murder. The true obscenity is that Catholics support a Pope who blamed gays for their own murder because they seek civil equality.
[Frank…Cases like this one are among the reasons the Church opposed the recent hate crimes bill that was signed into law. Dcn. G.]

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posted May 26, 2010 at 1:30 pm

I hope, too, that they catch the perpetrators and that the motivation behind the act is less than sinister. I recall a few years ago the statue of Our Lady that stood in front of the chancery was vandalized. It turned out to be some poor soul who was mentally disturbed and off his meds. He had done some damage at a couple of Protestant churches, as well – broken windows, that sort of thing.
I’ve never been a fan of the idea of hate crimes. It strikes me as punishing someone for what they think or believe, which is not in our tradition of protected thought. Thoughts, beliefs, ideas deserve protection, no matter how vile. Acts that are crimes do not deserve protection.

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posted May 26, 2010 at 3:13 pm

Truly sad. With any luck, the person who committed this crime will be caught and punished.

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posted May 26, 2010 at 9:06 pm

Vandals hit our Catholic school a month ago. They started in the computer lab, where the smashed 18 computers, poured hand sanitizer in a printer, tossed five classrooms and the principals office, and pulled food out of the freezers and spread it around, and smashed the schools entire milk supply throughout the kitchen, gym and hallways. They particularly smashed all of the boys trophies in the trophy case, and the large crucifix by the front hall. According to smashed clocks and entries in computer log files, they started at the high school, two blocks away. There they started in the school shop classroom, which they smashed with hammers, smashed projectors in classrooms, completely trashed the school office, did similar damage in their kitchen, and smashed every trophy that they could reach, all of the glass in the trophy cases, and destroyed all of the championship and league banners in the gym that they could reach. In both schools they discharged fire extinguishers, and used them to smash into rooms. There was nothing stolen. The 13 iMacs that they smashed in the lab could have been easily tucked under an arm and sold for $1000 on ebay. In one room, they smashed the piggy bank with the mission collection and threw the money around the room. The kids had just counted the money the day before and every penny was gone.
I agree with Kenneth — especially the attack on the trophy cases was very personal, surely a hate crime, and probably by someone who went to both schools.

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posted May 27, 2010 at 2:46 am

The local Greek Orthodox Cathedral was hit with hate graffiti discovered Palm Sunday. I was there for Bridegroom Matins on Monday and the Oakland Police graffiti abatement team (I was told) had done a stellar job of cleaning it up. As far as I know no one has been charged.
The large crucifix in the school yard at my Latin parish was vandalized last year, along with graffiti else where in the neighborhood, prompting the decision to lock the main doors and one side of the church and the other side doors are locked around 6pm. All the doors used to remain open until late evening.
Last summer “A surveillance camera caught three men smashing and then stealing a statue of “Our Lady of Turlock” that stood in a fountain outside St. Thomas Assyrian-Chaldean Catholic Church.”
Read more:

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posted May 27, 2010 at 9:35 am

Frank go save the world somewhere else.
There was Hitler, that doesn’t mean it’s fine to assault someone.
If you were really concerned about gays you’d be going after Muslims who do far more damage worldwide to the gay community.
You stupid hypocrites don’t even realize that there would be no gay movement if it hadn’t been for Christianity.
Before Christianity everyone just killed you, and it wasn’t even called a crime, let alone given a privileged title with harsher penalties.
Only an “inclusive” politically correct mind like Frank’s could be completely comfortable with what’s been done to this Catholic community.
Luckily Our Lady is the Queen of Heaven and, for my money, is deeply concerned for the people who did this to the picture of her..just like the Mongols biker gang that used to pee on the altar at St. Mary’s in Camarillo. They’re all drug addicted, in prison or dead now.. Living out the fruits of having refused her intervention perhaps.

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