Three Louisiana Black Churches Have Suspiciously Burned Down

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Ursuline Church, New Orleans, Louisiana

Source: Patrick Donovan / Getty

Three black churches in Louisiana have burned down in the last two weeks and police feel that this is more than a coincidence.  It isn’t clear if the fires were related, but police have found “suspicious elements” regarding each fire, the New York Times reports.

“There is clearly something happening in this community,” State Fire Marshal H. Browning said in a statement. “That is why it is imperative that the citizens of this community be part of our effort to figure out what it is.”

Since March 26th there have been three fires that destroyed the predominately black churches. A fourth one occurred on March 31st at a predominately white church, Vivian United Pentecostal Church, that authorities feel was intentionally set as well. The churches that were set ablaze include Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, the Greater Union Baptist Church and St. Mary Baptist Church, which is the church that was set on fire first.

“You got to have a certain degree of anger because there’s no reason for this,” Deacon Earnest Hines of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church told CNN affiliate WBRZ. “You know the history of our country. During the civil rights struggle, they had all these incidents that would happen and sometimes that happens again.”
The FBI and federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are helping with the investigation of these fires.
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