FBI helping investigate fires at three historically black churches in single Louisiana parish
“There is clearly something happening in this community,” Louisiana State Fire Marshal H. Browning said last week after three historically black churches burned within two weeks in a single parish. Officials cite “suspicious elements” in the fires and are investigating, with the FBI and federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives joining the investigation.
“There certainly is a commonality, and whether that leads to a person or persons or groups, we just don’t know,” Browning told reporters after Mount Pleasant Baptist Church was burned early Thursday morning. St. Mary Baptist Church and Greater Union Baptist Church had previously been set on fire. All three are in St. Landry Parish, in the southern part of the state.
Another fire was “intentionally set” at a black church three hours away in Caddo Parish on Sunday, but that church wasn’t destroyed. According to a spokeswoman for the fire marshal’s office, “just as we haven’t connected the three in St. Landry, we haven’t connected the one in Caddo.”
While the investigation is ongoing, this sure looks suspicious.