An Episcopal congregation in North Miami Beach had just finished praying for the lives lost in Orlando the previous Sunday when their service was interrupted by a man who threatened to shoot the priest and anyone who remained in the church. The man had previously warned of his plans, and police officers were already on hand.
From the Miami Herald:
Three days before his church service disruption — which ended in his arrest — police say he destroyed the church sign in the front of the monastery and the next day decapitated an 875-year-old statue.
Mansfield said Arizamendoza — who was known by staff as receiving assistance for the homeless — told the monastery manager that he’d be there Sunday. Police officers were waiting.
Arizamendoza, 33, of Maryland, was being held Monday in the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center on a $75,000 bond. He faces charges including aggravated assault at a religious institution, disturbing religious assembly, two counts of criminal mischief at a place of worship and burglary of an unoccupied dwelling.
Bishop Peter Eaton, of the Diocese of Southeast Florida, told the Miami Herald that he rushed to the church as soon as he heard of the incident. He told the paper, “Anytime that there is an incident like this we are all very concerned. Churches are places where people need to be safe.”