Some vandals are shooting out church windows in Tulsa. Four different churches have been hit repeatedly in the past few months. News on Six crime reporter Lori Fullbright says these people simply drive by and shoot at windows.
The church vandalism is getting old and expensive. Theyâ€™ve paid hundreds to replace their windows so many times, that now; they're just patching up the holes and hoping for the best.
You don't expect to see bullet holes in a place of worship, a place that's supposed to be a sanctuary for people, a sacred place, but they're here and plenty of them. Pastor Lynn Simpson, Yale Ave Presbyterian Church: "We had nine windows broken and replaced them, then two more and two more and now, four more."
This time, they plan to patch them up rather than replace them; the same thing the church across the street has had to do this time. Pastor Darryl BeBorde, Braden Park Baptist Church: "It started the day after Labor Day, then spiked at Halloween and Thanksgiving and now it's close to Christmas."
Churches aren't the only targets. Someone's also shooting a pellet gun at businesses, mostly in a two-mile radius, from Sheridan to Mingo, Admiral to 21st Street. Malcom Williams with the Tulsa Police Department, "For a child, or whoever's committing these crimes, they may think it's fun, but, at five hundred or a thousand a pop, it can get really expensive."
Expensive to churches that value every penny and that would rather be using that money to help people in the neighborhood rather than to replace windows every few weeks. Pastor Lynn Simpson: "I doubt these people are mad at the church, at least I don't think so. I think they're just looking for windows, just something to do.â€
Either way, it's frustrating and irritating to all the churches that must waste time, effort and money to deal with the work of vandals who think nothing of shooting up places of worship. About 20 of these pellet guns shootings happened in the week following Thanksgiving and Tulsa Police want it to stop.
So, if you know anything about these crimes, you can turn them in and pocket up to $2,000 cash, just by calling Crimestoppers at 596-COPS.As always, no one who calls that number has to give their name.