(ST. LOUIS) — Authorities announced the arrest of a suspect in the string of church fires that have occurred at black churches in Missouri.
According to the Kansas City Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, David Lopez Jackson was detained and charged with two counts of arson on Friday. The ATF did say, however, that the investigation had not revealed any apparent targeting of a particular Christian denomination or ethnic group.
“Arson is a violent crime,” ATF Kansas City Field Division Special Agent in Charge Gregory Gant said. “ATF views an arson attack against a house of worship as an attack on not just a building, but against a community.”
At least seven church fires have been reported in October. St. Louis County Police Chief Bob Dotson said Friday that he hoped additional charges were coming.
Dotson noted that surveillance footage captured Jackson’s car at the scene of one of the fires.
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