Pro-life display repeatedly vandalized at Bucks County church

Trish Hartman Image
Wednesday, November 6, 2019
Pro-life display repeatedly vandalized at Bucks County church
Pro-life display repeatedly vandalized at Bucks County church. Trish Hartman reports on Action News at 4 on Nov. 5, 2019.

BUCKINGHAM TOWNSHIP, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Police in Bucks County are investigating three cases of vandalism at a church over the last few weeks.

Detectives say crosses and signs were damaged or stolen at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Buckingham Township. It's part of a pro-life display put up every October for Respect Life Month.

"We display crosses remembering the unborn and we pray for the end of abortion," said Father Robert Ianelli, Parochial Vicar for Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Father Robert Ianelli says while vandals have hit the display before, but this year was much worse.

"The crosses were smashed, they were scattered over the street, signs were stolen, so this year the vandalism was over the top," said Ianelli.

Buckingham Township police are investigating three separate incidents of institutional vandalism involving the display in October.

Police say for at least one of the incidents, two vehicles may have been involved.

"There was a light-colored pickup truck and a sedan type vehicle that stopped in front of the crosses, they sat there for about a minute and left the area when they were approached by another car," said Detective Timothy Johnson.

Police say the crosses were vandalized later that night.

Parishioners responded by holding a rally and replacing the crosses.

Church members we spoke with hope conversation can replace destruction.

"Respect other people's beliefs," said parishioner Ray Lokay from Doylestown, Pennsylvania. "Understand that you may have your own. But speak about it. Don't vandalize."

Detectives are in the process of looking for surveillance video from nearby businesses.

Anyone with info is asked to contact Buckingham Township police at 215-794-8812.