AL - FBI investigating fires at 6 Alabama churches, Centreville,2006

Discussion in 'Crimes in the News' started by Shadow205, Feb 3, 2006.

  1. Shadow205

    Shadow205 New Member

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    CENTREVILLLE, Ala. (AP) — The FBI is investigating a string of suspected arson fires that damaged five rural Alabama churches late Thursday and early Friday

    <snip>

    The fires were set "as fast as they could drive from one location to the next," Bibb County Chief Deputy Sheriff Kenneth Weems said of the cluster of blazes, all near U.S. 82 and Highway 139.

    more at link http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-02-03-church-fires_x.htm?POE=NEWISVA
     
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  3. mssheila

    mssheila New Member

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    There are 3 more church fires as of today... just heard it on MSNBC
     
  4. mssheila

    mssheila New Member

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    http://www.ksat.com/news/6808946/detail.html

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- A spokesman for the Alabama Insurance Department now says a fourth Baptist church was damaged by fire overnight.


    Ragan Ingram said the Gallilee Baptist church in the Panola community in Sumter County, Ala., also suffered fire damage. Three other churches -- Dancy First Baptist Church near Aliceville, Ala., Spring Valley Baptist Church near Emelle, Ala., and Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church near Boligee, Ala.
     
  5. BhamMama

    BhamMama Former Member

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    This comes after 11 fires have been set in Churchs here.

    WHITE PLAINS, Ala. - An arrest has been made in a vacant church fire in East Alabama. Officials said the burning of the old White Plaines Church of God Monday night in White Plains, which is in Calhoun County, was not related to the other 10 church fires in West Alabama.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11354168/
     
  6. Curious J

    Curious J New Member

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  7. tezi

    tezi Member of Websleuths since 2000.

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    I am glad they finally caught these morons! And they did this because?????:bang: :bang: :bang:

    BTW, Welcome to WS!:dance:
     
  8. Buzz Mills

    Buzz Mills New Member

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    This is great news--hopefully they will round all of them up, and make an example of them, so the rest of their brethren understand.
     
  9. montana_16

    montana_16 Active Member

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    When are they going to be called terrorists, because that's what they are.
     
  10. Buzz Mills

    Buzz Mills New Member

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    On the news, it was said, that they face up to 45 years in prison. I wonder if they just consider it "just a joke" now??
     
  11. BillyGoatGruff

    BillyGoatGruff New Member

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    Actually the original definition of the term vandals applies here.
     
  12. PrayersForMaura

    PrayersForMaura Help Find Maura Murray

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    Drinking May Have Fueled Ala. Church Fires

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Three college students suspected of a string of Alabama church fires may have been out drinking when they began their spree, authorities said.
    Benjamin Nathan Moseley and Russell Lee DeBusk Jr., both 19-year-old theater students at Birmingham-Southern College, were arrested this week along with 20-year-old Matthew Lee Cloyd, who was studying pre-med at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

    Throughout the monthlong investigation, authorities said alcohol could have led to a warped bravado that sparked the arsons, and initial interviews with the suspects bore out the theory, according to one officer.

    More: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060310/ap_on_re_us/church_fires
     
  13. BhamMama

    BhamMama Former Member

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    Breaking news via my Birmingham, Alabama Fox 6 tv station.

    They are releasing the two 19 year olds and the 20 year old from jail on 50,000 bond each, with special circumstances. They will wear monitoring anklets and the parents are in charge of making sure they don't do anything stupid and are required to turn them in if they violate any order from the court.

    It's just sad.

    Not sure how much info y'all get via your news but the school they went to is a Methodist founded school and all of the Churchs were Baptist. I've never thought they were targeted just because they were Baptist. No one else did either. They were a nasty crime but I don't think they were hate crimes per say.

    At any rate, I thought it was very nice of the school to make an annoucement and they are sending folks and money to help the Church's rebuild. And not just because of the faith issue but because it just shows how people come together in times of need and trouble.
     
  14. BhamMama

    BhamMama Former Member

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    New update:

    Attorney General asked the State Fire Marshall for warrants. They will be released from where they are if they pay bond and will be arrested outside that jail for these second warrants.

    The charges are 5 counts each of 2nd degree arson for 5 Churches.
     
  15. Cypros

    Cypros New Member

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    It sounds like these are hate crimes to me. Christian kids of one denomination targeting the churches of another denomination. They may not know WHY they hate the Baptists (probably have no idea what is the difference) but the fact that all the churches were Baptist is a fact that cannot be ignored.
     
  16. BhamMama

    BhamMama Former Member

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    The boys said it was a drunken prank that went too far. So far every law enforcement and others have said it was not a hate crime.

    I think the reason most were Baptist is you can't throw a stick here without hitting one...seriously.

    For the rural areas, I'd garner a guess and say most Churchs are Baptist of some form, either primitive, antioch, southern, freewill or antioch primitive, or one of the other varieties. They were looking for out of the way Churchs, they just happened to all be Baptist.

    From a paper the Biblical Reporter,

    "We're very relieved to know this had no political, racial or religious overtones," said Jim Parker, pastor of Ashby Baptist Church in Bibb County. "To the churches in our community, this was devastating. For a blow like that, you're looking for a reason. To think it was malicious vandalism, we're just kind of taken aback."

    It really was just stupidity, alcohol, rural areas and a quick get away.
     
  17. montana_16

    montana_16 Active Member

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    To me terror is terror regardless of the race or religion of the people participating in it.

    I fail to understand how purposely burning down churches can even be considered a joke gone wrong.
     
  18. BhamMama

    BhamMama Former Member

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    I agree and I'm stumped as to that answer. One might be considered a stupid idea but to go and do it again, and again, and again? That's no joke.

    I'm hoping when they walk out and the State gets them that we get more info. It's really scared a lot of people.
     
  19. LovelyPigeon

    LovelyPigeon Former Member

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    Alcohol induced bravado, and maybe some new age satanist leanings make more sense to me than "a joke" as reason to set churches on fire. I just can't guess what kind of "joke" would lead to torching churches!

    Saturday, March 11, 2006
    Hard To Believe: Friends, teachers of three charged in fires at nine Alabama churches are stunned by the arrests
    RELIGION NEWS SERVICE

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala.

    Ben. Matt. Russ. Their names match their profiles. All-American college boys from the suburbs with big dreams, promising futures, good parents. Between them there was an occasional speeding ticket, the lust for stardom, an unquenchable thirst for beer, but nothing to indicate that they were up to no good in the deep woods of west Alabama.

    Benjamin Moseley and Russell DeBusk, both 19, were top theater students at Birmingham-Southern College. Moseley loved the limelight. DeBusk was his sidekick.

    Leaders in local film took note of their quirky talent, and the two landed roles in a film by the University of Alabama at Birmingham called the Youth Violence Project. They hoped that community film would be a springboard to Los Angeles, they told the Birmingham-Southern student newspaper. Eerily, the film appeared Wednesday - the day their faces were broadcast internationally after being arrested in the arson of nine Alabama churches.

    Less enthralled with fame and film, Matthew Cloyd, 20, hooked up with the others when he and DeBusk lived in the same dorm.

    An academic standout, Cloyd grew up a doctor's son in Shelby County. His true love was deer hunting. But hunting was intertwined with alcohol, and a rebellious anger crept into Cloyd's personality.--->>

    After he got a speeding ticket - 85 in a 70 - his Web site musings grew cryptically violent. "Let us defy the very morals of society instilled upon us by our parents, our relatives and of course Jesus," he wrote to Moseley last summer as the two planned a road trip.

    About the same time, DeBusk and Moseley started dabbling in the occult. They told friends they were Satanists on a hunt for knowledge, though their friends didn't take it too seriously.
    - http://www.journalnow.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=WSJ%2FMGArticle%2FWSJ_BasicArticle&c=MGArticle&cid=1137834641058&path=!living&s=1037645509005

    I keep asking myself, what were they THINKING?! So sad for all involved.
     
  20. Splenda

    Splenda New Member

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    Churches were targeted simply because they were close in proximity to one another in woodlands near where the three young men hunted deer (& farmers' cows in pastures along the rural roadway, including a pregnant cow killed that night). The second set of arsons were done to throw off investigators. Defendants' families hired PR firms immediately to quite successfully handle media & put a good faith spin on the situation. All three defendants got early parole from the federal system & the state sentences were set aside against heated arguments by the DA for them to serve the state sentences. All three were released, with million(s) in restitution remaining unpaid. Details can be confirmed & more in The Centreville Press archives. Privilege prevailed in comparison to sentences served in lesser arson cases.
     

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