FBI Helping Investigate Idaho Church Vandalism
CHUBBUCK, Idaho (KPVI) — The Federal Bureau of Investigation confirmed Tuesday they are assisting Chubbuck Police in the investigation of vandalism at three buildings belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Patricia Speelman, Salt Lake City media coordinator for the FBI, told KPVI in an email that federal detectives are helping out.
Speelman did not confirm if hate crime charges would be pursued in this case, but the presence of the FBI does hint at the possibility of federal charges. Last Thursday, members of the LDS church woke up to find three of their buildings had been tagged by vandals. Chubbuck Police Chief Randy Severe says dispatch started taking calls about the crimes at 6:45 a.m. Thursday.
The vandalism included several anti-Mormon statements, vulgar language, numerous drawings of male and female genitalia and a depiction of the devil. Severe did say he believes the same suspect or suspects were involved in all three vandalisms. The damage has been cleaned up for the most part, but the investigation is far from over as police continue to follow up on new leads.