Man wanted for breaking $8,000 Jesus statue in west Houston

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A reward is being offered to whoever helps police make an arrest of a man accused of smashing a Jesus statue.

The incident happened in late April. Crime Stoppers released the image and announced a reward on Tuesday.

Surveillance video caught the mischief in action. In a matter of seconds, the suspect slams the monument onto the ground, causing the head to break.



"That's just the demonic spirit," Ethel Simpson said. "Those spirits are among us, live and roaming around."

"What's wrong with you? You don't need to do anything like that," Dejesselle Gamboa said. "There's no reason why you should hate someone else's beliefs that badly."

Houston police said the incident happened sometime between Friday, April 26 and Saturday, April 27. Once caught, the suspect faces a felony criminal mischief charge.

The statue was smashed, but Jesus hasn't gone far. It's once again sitting outside Midtown Monuments in west Houston. It may look repaired, but you can still see the damage.

The statue isn't cheap. The owner says it's valued at $8,000. For some neighbors, it's not about the value, but the fact someone would do this to Jesus' image.

"That's not good," Victor Cisneros said. "These people need to be caught and prosecuted because that's sending a bad message to other kids."

"It's more than a monument if you have God in your heart," Esther Thompson said. "It means more than just a monument because it's showing respect to God, and what he means to you."

Police believe the suspect was a young male, but besides that, they don't have a good description of the suspect.

Crime Stoppers may pay up to $5,000 for information leading to an arrest.

Information can be reported by calling 713-222-TIPS (8477) or it can be submitted online at www.crime-stoppers.org. All tipsters remain anonymous.

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