St. Louis Police Investigating Sixth Fire in Two Weeks at Black Churches
J.B. Forbes/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP

St. Louis police are searching for a suspect—and a motive—in a recent series of fires in the last two weeks at predominately Black churches.

According to ABC News, investigators have no leads, but they suspect that the arson is either religiously or racially motivated and are looking into the possibility of a hate crime. No one has been injured in the fires, and in all cases, the damage was contained to an exterior wall.

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“We are upset, and we’re concerned that there’s an individual who, for whatever reason, is sick,” Michele Brown, a business manager at one of the damaged churches, told ABC. “We prayed for them Sunday. There’s something wrong with someone who would do something like that.”

Since Thursday, October 8, Bethel Nondenominational Church, New Northside Missionary Baptist Church, St. Augustine Catholic Church, New Testament Church of Christ, New Life Missionary Baptist Church and Ebenezer Lutheran Church have all been set ablaze. 

Police are offering a $2,000 for any tips that lead to an arrest.