Crime scene tape

ELKTON – Investigators are continuing to look for leads after someone spray-painted graffiti on the outer walls of the Elkton United Methodist Church on Main Street last month, three days before Christmas, according to police.

Capt. Joseph Zurolo, an Elkton Police Department spokesman, told the Cecil Whig that Ofc. Kevin Forster went to the church at approximately 9:45 a.m. Dec. 22 in response to a malicious destruction of property complaint, after the senior pastor, The Rev. Karen Bunnell, discovered the vandalism and contacted the agency.

The graffiti, which reportedly contained no profanity, was found on portions of all four exterior walls, police said. The yet-to-be-identified culprit spray-painted names, a three-digit number and some words, including “Loser,” police added.

(Because the meaning, if any, of the graffiti is unknown, the Whig has elected not to further detail the content.)

“It was on all four walls, and the graffiti was pretty much the same,” Zurolo said.

Joe Buckley, a EUMC parishioner, reported that all of the graffiti was removed later on Dec. 22 during a cleanup effort.

“We’ve cleaned it up and we’re moving on,” Buckley said, adding, “Hopefully, this was an isolated incident.”

Zurolo reported that a surveillance camera in the back of the church videotaped someone spray-painting the back wall in the early morning hours of Dec. 22, when it was still dark. He described the person only as an “unidentified white male” who was wearing mostly dark clothing.

Forster was able to develop a “person of interest” and he contacted him later on Dec. 22, but the interview proved to be inconclusive, according to Zurolo, who declined to specify how Forster developed the person of interest, as to avoid compromising the ongoing investigation.

“We were unable to determine if he was a suspect,” Zurolo said, explaining that there was a lack of evidence.

Anyone with information that might help investigators identify the person responsible for spray-painting the graffiti on the church is asked to call EPD Ofc. Kevin Forster at 410-398-4200, ext. 79.

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