NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police are searching for a woman seen on video destroying two statues that stood outside a Queens church for decades.
The suspect allegedly knocked over the statues and dragged them into the street, where she used a hammer to smash them into bits and pieces.
A sign now stands outside the church, saying “please pray for the person who did this.”
One statue was of the Blessed Mother, the other of Saint Therese.
The act of vandalism happened early Saturday morning at Our Lady of Mercy Roman Catholic Church in Forest Hills.
Surveillance video shows the suspect toppling the statues, tossing them across 70th Avenue, and even stomping on them.
The church said the same two statues were knocked over but not damaged earlier this week. It believes the same person is responsible for both incidents.
Parishioners say what is particularly heartbreaking about the act is that the two statues have stood outside the church since its opening day back in 1937.
They urge anyone with information to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). You can also submit a tip via their website or on Twitter, @NYPDTips. All calls are kept confidential.
CBS2’s Christina Fan contributed to this report.