A Las Vegas man is in custody after allegedly being caught on video last month vandalizing the iconic Chapel of the Holy Cross in Sedona, Arizona, in a profanity-laced rampage against the Roman Catholic church.
Timothy Larson, 41, faces charges of criminal damage at a place of worship, burglary, trespassing and disorderly conduct. As of Friday, he remained held at the Coconino County Detention Center on $30,000 bail, according to jail records.
Sgt. Michael Dominguez of the Sedona Police Department said Larson’s last known address was in Las Vegas, and his vehicle was still registered in Nevada at time of his arrest on Sept. 25, about two hours after the vandalism had occurred.
Dominguez said that, based on statements made during the rampage and several of the suspect’s social media posts, the vandalism was meant to be an attack on Catholicism.
In the rampage, which began just after 3:50 p.m., the word “Evil” had been spray-painted onto the doors of the chapel, which is built into the buttes of Sedona. Inside, the altar, some candles and a collection box were destroyed with a crowbar although no money was taken, said Dominguez.
In a tweet posted to his Twitter account the day before the chapel was vandalized, Larson said he had an “important mission,” Dominguez said.
Police located Larson about two hours after the chapel had been vandalized outside a business a few miles from the chapel.
Investigators had sent out an alert, with a photo of Larson taken by a witness, on NextDoor, a social networking app primarily used to connect neighborhoods.
“It was truly a community effort,” Dominguez said of Larson’s arrest.