Arrest made after Statue of Virgin Mary found smashed, anti-Catholic note left at East Side church

Local News

Police have made an arrest after a historic statue of the Virgin Mary outside an East Side church was smashed.

Buffalo resident Kalil Colbert, 18 was charged with criminal mischief, aggravated harassment, and hate crime/aggravated harassment.

Buffalo Police received a call just after 11 p.m. Tuesday after remains of the statue were found in the parking lot at St. John Kanty.

The statue had been found by a maintenance man standing on the foundation on the corner of Broadway and Browell, its face and hands smashed.

Beside the statue was a cryptic note which read: “This building will be destroyed. Stop worshipping Mary, worship God- Catholics are a man-made religion”. 

St. John Kanty’s Father Michael Burzynski said that security footage from the store across the street shows a man dragging the statue to the middle of the parking lot and smashing it with a baseball bat. 

“We called police and they have been in touch with neighbors about what happened,” Fr. Burzynski said. 

The statue was dedicated in 2014. A previous one stood at the church for forty years. 

Fr. Burzynski called the incident ” an opportunity for good”. 

The church will have extra security and will work with Buffalo Police to keep an eye on things.

Colbert will undergo a psychiatric evaluation and must stay at least 100 feet away from the church.

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