A man who targeted four Catholic Church buildings in central Rome over
the last 24 hours has been apprehended, Italian police said Saturday.
The suspect was described as a 39-year-old legal resident from Ghana
with several previous run-ins with the law. Authorities are evaluating
what charges to press, a statement said.
Police said he broke into four churches in central Rome – twice on
Friday evening and twice on Saturday morning – and damaged at least five
A parish priest who witnessed one of the attacks, Father Pedro Savelli
of Santa Prassede church, told the La Repubblica newspaper: “He was out
of his mind, but luckily we made him run away before he also destroyed
“It was all over in a few seconds, and luckily not many people were in
the church, no more than 15. But they were all terrified. That man was
out of control, he said we were using sacred images in the wrong way and
then hurled himself at the statues,” Savelli added.